Jobless claims in US rise again

Unemployment claims in the US rose more than expected last week, official figures revealed yesterday. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 25,000 to a seasonally adjusted 410,000, the Labor Department said, partially reversing the prior weeks hefty decline. “We see this move as a continued unwind of the weather-related distortions to the previous weeks of claims data,” said Michael Gapen of Barclays Capital. “The large drop-off in claims last week was due in part to the unwinding of the weather effects that caused a surge in claims at the end of January,” he explained. The number of people receiving benefits under regular state programmes after an initial week of aid edged up 1,000 to 3.91m.