Jobless claims: Another 770,000 Americans filed new unemployment claims

U.S. new weekly jobless claims unexpectedly rose to 770,000 last week even amid a wave of abating social distancing restrictions and improving weather.

The Department of Labor released its weekly report on new jobless claims on Thursday at 8:30 a.m. ET. Here were the main metrics from the report, compared to consensus data compiled by Bloomberg:

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Initial jobless claims, week ended March 13: 770,000 vs. 700,000 expected and 712,000 during the prior week

Continuing claims, week ended March 6: 4.124 million vs. 4.034 million expected and 4.144 million during the prior week

Initial unemployment claims were expected to hold below 800,000 for a fourth consecutive week. Still, initial jobless claims remain above the Great Recession-era high of 665,000 from 2009. And new claims still need to fall significantly further to return to 2019 levels, when new claims averaged just over 200,000 per week.

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