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Financial News: U.S. Jobless Claims Drop More Than Expected To

U.S. Jobless Claims Drop More Than Expected To 246,000

02/02/2017 - 09:16:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - A day ahead of the closely watched monthly jobs report, the Labor Department released a report on Thursday showing a bigger than expected drop in first-time claims for U.S. unemployment benefits in the week ended January 28th.

The report said initial jobless claims dropped to 246,000, a decrease of 14,000 from the previous week's revised level of 260,000.

Economists had expected jobless claims to dip to 253,000 from the 259,000 originally reported for the previous week.

Meanwhile, the Labor Department said the less volatile four-week moving average rose to 248,000, an increase of 2,250 from the previous week's revised average of 245,750.

The report also said continuing claims, a reading on the number of people receiving ongoing unemployment assistance, fell by 39,000 to 2.064 million in the week ended January 21st.

The four-week moving average of continuing claims also declined to 2,079,750, a decrease of 13,000 from the previous week's revised average of 2,092,750.

Friday morning, the Labor Department is scheduled to release its more closely watched monthly employment report for January.

The report is expected to show that employment increased by 175,000 jobs in January after climbing by 156,000 jobs in December. The unemployment rate is expected to hold at 4.7 percent.

Payroll processor ADP released a report on Wednesday showing much stronger than expected private sector job growth in the month of January.

The report said private sector employment jumped by 246,000 jobs in January after climbing by a revised 151,000 jobs in December.

Economists had expected an increase of about 168,000 jobs compared to the addition of 153,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

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