Weekly unemployment claims:

Weekly unemployment claims:

The motorcade of Americans heading for the unemployment line continued to decline last week, with jobless claims totaling a new pandemic-era low of 444,000, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

The economist interviewed by Dow Jones expected 452,000 new applications as the employment situation continues to improve thanks to an accelerated economic reopening across the country.

The total was down from 478,000 the previous week.

For the same period a year ago, claims totaled over 2.3 million.

While Federal Reserve officials continue to stress the need to further improve the employment picture, figures from the claims suggest that employment is growing steadily. However, continuing claims edged up to 3.75 million, an increase of 111,000. Continuing claims run a week behind the title number.

Still, the aggregate numbers help provide some optimism after April’s staggering disappointment in which non-farm payrolls only increased by 266,000 from estimates of 1 million.

A sustained and sustained pace of Covid-19 vaccines has spurred economic recovery, with the United States still administering 1.8 million vaccines per day.

Along with the continued decline in the number of titles, the total number of benefit recipients has fallen from nearly 900,000 to just under 16 million, according to data up to May 1.

Most of the decrease is due to a decrease in the number of beneficiaries of emergency programs linked to the pandemic. The enhanced benefits that Congress authorized related to the pandemic expire in September.

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