U.S. Jobless Claims Drop Again


Claims for U.S. unemployment benefits dropped to its lowest level since 2008 last week, the U.S. Labor Department reported yesterday.

The Labor Department reported that 383,000 people filed new claims during the first week of February, which is down 36,000 from the prior week's 419,000 new claims. This is the lowest number of new claims since July 2008, when 371, 000 claims were filed.

On Wednesday, Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Federal Reserve, told lawmakers in Washington, D.C., that declines in the unemployment rate over the past two months provide "some grounds for optimism."

The claims numbers come after a report showing that employers added 36,000 jobs in January, and the unemployment rate fell from 9.4 percent in December to 9 percent in January.


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