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U.S. Weekly Jobless Claims Rise Less Than Expected To 211,000

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First-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits showed a modest increase in the week ended January 18th, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Thursday.

The report said initial jobless claims rose to 211,000, an increase of 6,000 from the previous week's revised level of 205,000.

Economists had expected jobless claims to climb to 215,000 from the 204,000 originally reported for the previous week.

Meanwhile, the Labor Department said the less volatile four-week moving average fell to 213,250, a decrease of 3,250 from the previous week's revised average of 216,500.

Continuing claims, a reading on the number of people receiving ongoing unemployment assistance, also slid by 37,000 to 1.731 million in the week ended January 11th.

The four-week moving average of continuing claims still crept up to 1,757,750, an increase of 2,000 from the previous week's revised average of 1,755,750.

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