Jobless claims jump, hitting highest level since mid-August

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American workers continued to hit the unemployment line in large numbers last week, with 898,000 new claims filed for jobless benefits.

Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been looking for 830,000.

The total for the week ended Oct. 10 was the highest number since Aug. 22 and another sign that the labor market continues to struggle to get back to its pre-coronavirus pandemic mark. The number represented a gain of 53,000 from the previous week’s upwardly revised total of 845,000.

Despite the higher than expected total, the level of continuing claims continues to fall at a brisk pace, declining by 1.165 million to just over 10 million. Continuing claims data runs a week behind the headline claims number.

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