Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week, potentially indicating the economic condition of the country is improving. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits decreased 6,000 to a seasonally adjusted 361,000, the Labor Department stated. Many economists had projected claims to rise to 370,000.
The data is reported following information released last week showing that in July employers hired the most workers in the last five-month period.
Additional positive news showed the deficit on the trade balance in June was the smallest in 1-1/2 years, mostly attributed to petroleum import declines.
Nonfarm payrolls increased 163,000 in July after three months of gains below 100,000. But the unemployment rate rose by a tenth of a percentage point to 8.3 percent.
The government is expected to publish its second GDP estimate later in August showing annual pace of at least 1.8 percent from 1.5 percent.Pages: