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U.S. Jobless Claims Remain Elevated in Fits-and-Starts Recovery

  • Filings unexpectedly rise, continuing claims above forecast
  • Broadest claims measure drops as California curbs fraud
Bloomberg business news
WATCH: Mike McKee has the latest unemployment numbers.Source: Bloomberg)
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Applications for U.S. unemployment benefits were little changed last week, contrasting with estimates for a decline and highlighting an economic recovery that’s coming in fits and starts.

Initial jobless claims in regular state programs increased by 4,000 to 870,000 in the week ended Sept. 19, still about four times pre-pandemic levels, according to Labor Department figures released Thursday. Continuing claims -- the total number of Americans claiming ongoing unemployment assistance in those programs -- fell by less than forecast in the week ended Sept. 12 and remain almost double the high from the last recession.