US initial jobless claims fall to 277,000

Washington, Jan 8 (IANS) The number of Americans initially applying for unemployment aid decreased last week, echoing an healthy job market.

In the week ending January 2, the advance figure of seasonally adjusted initial claims for jobless benefits decreased to 277,000, a drop of 10,000 than the unrevised level of the previous week, Xinhua cited the US Labour Department as saying on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the four-week moving average, which helps smooth out week-to-week volatility, edged down by 1,250 to 275,750 last week.

The advance figure of seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending December 26 increased 25,000 from the previous week to 2,230,000.

The US private sector added 257,000 jobs in December, the best monthly performance in 2015, said the National Employment Report released jointly by Automatic Data Processing (ADP) and Moody’s Analytics on Wednesday.

“If this pace of job growth is sustained, which seems likely, the economy will be back to full employment by mid-year,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics.

The Labour Department will release its jobs report for December on Friday.

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