US filings for jobless claims inch up modestly, but continuing claims rise for ninth straight week

WASHINGTON — The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits inched up last week, but remain at historically healthy levels despite elevated interest rates.

The Labor Department reported Wednesday that jobless claims for the week ending June 29 rose by 4,000 to 238,000 from 234,000 the previous week. The data was issued one day earlier than its regular Thursday release due to the July Fourth holiday.

Weekly unemployment claims — widely considered as representative of layoffs — remain at low levels by historical standards, a sign that most Americans enjoy unusual job security. Still, after mostly staying below 220,000 this year, weekly claims have steadily moved up recently.

The total number of Americans collecting unemployment benefits rose for the ninth straight week, to 1.86 million, for the week of June 22. That’s the most since November of 2021.

The four-week average of claims, which softens some of the week-to-week volatility, rose by 2,250 to 238,500.

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