The four-week rolling average of first-time claims fell to 375,000, down 4,750 from the previous week, but the number of claims filed in the week, 370,000, was unchanged from the previous week's revised figure.
The largest increases in initial benefits claims for the week ending May 5 were in Missouri (up by 2,569), New York (which gained 2,276), Pennsylvania (up 1,674) and California (up by 1,613). The largest decreases were in Florida (down by 2,599), Indiana (down 1,735), Connecticut (down 1,038) and New Hampshire (down 836).
The U.S. unemployment rate is 8.1 percent, falling 0.1 percentage points from March to April.
Notable deaths of 2014 [PHOTOS]