Oct. 1 (UPI) -- Nearly 850,000 additional U.S. workers have filed for new unemployment benefits, the Labor Department said in its weekly report Thursday.
The report listed 837,000 new claims for the week ending Sept. 26, a decrease of 36,000 from the previous week.
The department reported the unemployment rate at 8.1%, a decrease of just over a half-point since last week.
Thursday's report also revised up last week's count by 3,000 claims.
Most economists expected about 850,000 new claims.
The department said there are 11.8 million continuing claims, which lag initial claims by a week.
The report noted that California has begun a two-week pause in processing claims, which will impact the national totals.
Thursday's report came one day after the Commerce Department said the U.S. economy declined by a record 31.4% in the period between April and July.