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U.S. Weekly Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Drop To 209,000

First-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits unexpectedly showed a modest decrease in the week ended August 3rd, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday.

The report said initial jobless claims dipped to 209,000, a decrease of 8,000 from the previous week's revised level of 217,000. Economists had expected jobless claims to come in unchanged compared to the 215,000 originally reported for the previous week.

Meanwhile, the Labor Department said the less volatile four-week moving average crept up to 212,250, an increase of 250 from the previous week's revised average of 212,000.

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