Claims from first time jobseekers filed for the week ending Jan. 31 reached 626,000, the highest level since October 1982. There are now 4.79 million people unemployed in the US, the highest number since publication of the date began in 1967.
AFP - Initial claims for US unemployment benefits surged above 600,000 last week to the highest level since October 1982 amid a deepening recession, government data showed Thursday.
A seasonally adjusted 626,000 first-time jobless claims were filed in the week ended January 31, the US Labor Department said, far more than the 580,000 expected by most analysts.
The Labor Department revised upward the previous week's claims to 591,000, from 588,000, in its weekly snapshot on unemployment.
On a four-week rolling average, considered a more reliable indicator of labor trends, initial jobless claims rose 7.2 percent from the prior week to 582,250, the highest level since December 1982.
According to the department's seasonally adjusted data, the insured unemployment rate was 3.6 percent in the week ended January 24, unchanged from the week ended January 17 and the highest rate since August 1983.
The United States currently has a record 4.79 million people on the unemployment benefit rolls, the highest number since publication of the data began in 1967.
The Labor Department's January jobs data, due to be published Friday, is expected by most analysts to show the unemployment rate rose to 7.5 percent, from 7.2 percent in December.
Date created : 2009-02-05