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US Jobless Claims Fall, Services Growth Accelerates
New claims for jobless benefits in the U.S. dropped sharply in the last week of January, reversing a big spike in claims the previous week and keeping the underlying trend nearly unchanged, according to Reuters.
New claims for jobless benefits in the U.S. dropped sharply in the last week of January, reversing a big spike in claims the previous week and keeping the underlying trend nearly unchanged, according to Reuters. On Thursday, the Labor Departmentreported that initial claims for unemployment benefits dropped by 42,000 to a seasonally adjusted level of 415,000 in the week ending Jan. 29. The drop outpaced economists forecasts for a fall to 420,000 and brought the four-week average of new claims to 430,500, which was up just 1,000 from the previous report.
A separate report from the Institute for Supply Management showed that its index for non-manufacturing business rose over two points in January to 59.4, which outpaced economists expectation for virtually no change at 57.2, adds Bloomberg. The increase was driven by gains across the spectrum, with the sub-indices for new orders and business activity increasing to seven- and five-year highs, respectively. Also adding to the positive data was another Labor Department report that showed a jump in productivity for American workers in the fourth quarter.
Click here to read the story on jobless claims from Reuters.
Click here for coverage of services activity from Bloomberg News.