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440,000 file new unemployment claims; fewest in 14 months

The rate of new unemployment filings has steadily decreased since the middle of last year, when economic hardship related to the COVID-19 pandemic put tens of millions of U.S. workers out of a job. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI
The rate of new unemployment filings has steadily decreased since the middle of last year, when economic hardship related to the COVID-19 pandemic put tens of millions of U.S. workers out of a job. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

May 20 (UPI) -- More than 440,000 workers in the United States have filed new unemployment claims, the Labor Department said Thursday in its weekly report.

The department said 444,000 workers filed initial jobless claims last week, a decrease of 34,000 from the previous week. Thursday's report also revised up the prior week's claims by 5,000.

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The department said the new figure is the lowest single-week total for new claims since March 14, 2020, when 256,000 were filed.

Most analysts expected about 450,000 new claims.

There were about 3.8 million continuing claims, which lag initial claims by a week, Thursday's report said.

The rate of new filings has steadily decreased since the middle of last year, when economic hardship related to the COVID-19 pandemic put tens of millions of U.S. workers out of a job.

Government aid and stimulus efforts and widespread coronavirus vaccinations have contributed to the rebound.

A year in pandemic: How COVID-19 changed the world

January 31, 2020
National Institutes of Health official Dr. Anthony Fauci (C) speaks about the coronavirus during a press briefing at the White House in Washington, D.C. Health and Human Services Secretary Alexander Azar (L) announced that the United States is declaring the virus a public health emergency and issued a federal quarantine order of 14 days for 195 Americans. Photo by Leigh Vogel/UPI | License Photo

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