Jobless claims unexpectedly climb to 239,000 as layoffs grow

number of Americans applying unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week. This is evidence that the labor market is starting to soften in the face of rising borrowing costs.

announced numbers Thursday The first bill for the week ended April 8 increased from 11,000 to 239,000, according to the Labor Department. This is above the 2019 pre-pandemic average of 218,000.

Continuing claims filed by Americans receiving consecutive unemployment benefits fell slightly to 1.81 million in the week ending April 1, down 13,000 from the previous week.

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Job seekers will visit our booth during the Spring Job Fair at the Las Vegas Convention Center on Friday, April 15, 2022. (KM Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal/Getty Images)

Labor markets have remained historically tight over the past year, but there are increasing signs of a slowdown.

economy just added 236,000 jobs in Marchthe lowest monthly profit since December 2020.

According to another report released last week, 9.9 million job openings Job openings fell below 10 million for the first time since May 2021.

There has also been a notable wave of layoffs over the past few months, with the list growing longer by the day. Amazon, Apple, Meta Platforms, Lyft, Facebook, Google, IBM, and Twitter are among the companies laying off employees.

Central bank officials said they expect unemployment to rise as a result of higher interest rates. compulsory consumer Businesses should refrain from spending. Unemployment chance is ‘very high’ Fed Chairman Jerome Powell He told lawmakers in early March.

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hiring sign

The “Now Hiring” sign at a job fair on January 18, 2023 at Schneider Electric’s manufacturing facility in Hopkins, South Carolina. (Micah Green/Bloomberg via Getty Images / Getty Images)

Officials expect the unemployment rate to rise to 4.6% by the end of next year from the current 3.5%, according to forecasts at the central bank’s March meeting.

This could mean more than 1 million Americans will lose their jobs between now and the end of 2023.

Policymakers have already approved a ninth consecutive rate hike and opened the door to a 10th rate hike at their next meeting in early May, but they have stressed the importance of upcoming economic data releases.


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