The Labor Department said Thursday weekly jobless claims fell 3,000 to a seasonally adjusted 258,000 for the week ending March 25. The previous week’s level was unrevised.
The 4-week moving average was 254,250, an increase of 7,750 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 246,500. No state was triggered “on” the Extended Benefits program during the week ending March 11.
The gauge for first-time unemployment benefits at the state level has been clouded by revisions over the last few weeks. The 4-week moving average for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment was 2,030,750, a decrease of 1,250 from the previous week’s revised average. This is the lowest level for this average since June 24, 2000 when it was 2,028,250. The previous week’s average was revised down by 750 from 2,032,750 to 2,032,000.
The highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending March 11 were in Alaska (4.0), New Jersey (2.9), Connecticut (2.8), Montana (2.8), Pennsylvania (2.7), Rhode Island (2.7), Massachusetts (2.6), California (2.5), Illinois (2.5), and Puerto Rico (2.4).
The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending March 18 were in Ohio (+4,205), Kansas (+2,313), Missouri (+2,241), New Jersey (+1,019), and Kentucky (+815), while the largest decreases were in California (-4,764), New York (-1,556), Texas (- 759), Massachusetts (-555), and Georgia (-550).