US Jobless Claims Rise But Remain Near A Half-Century Low

WASHINGTON — The number of people seeking unemployment benefits ticked up last week but remained at a historically low level, reflecting a robust U.S. labor market with near record-high job openings and few layoffs.

Jobless claims rose by 18,000 to 185,000, the Labor Department said, after nearly touching the lowest level since 1968 in the previous week.

The four-week average of claims, which levels out week-to-week ups and downs, edged up from 170,000 to 172,000.

Two years after the coronavirus pandemic sent the economy into a brief but devastating recession, American workers are enjoying extraordinary job security.

Weekly applications for unemployment aid, a proxy for layoffs, have remained consistently below their pre-pandemic level of 225,000.