California, government shutdown lift US jobless claims to 6-mth high
WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits hit a six-month high last week amid a computer glitch in California, but the underlying trend pointed to a steadily improving labour market.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 66,000 to a seasonally adjusted 374,000, the highest level since the end of March, the Labour Department said on Thursday.
California, which is still dealing with technical problems from the upgrading of its computers, accounted for about half of the increase in claims, a Labour Department analyst said.
Troubles converting to the new system had resulted in a backlog of claims, which were now being pushed through, he said.