The Straits Times
Published on Nov 21, 2012

US jobless claims fall, but still high due to superstorm


WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - The number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week, but it remained elevated due to superstorm Sandy, a sign the storm was proving to be a substantial disruption to the labour market.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 41,000 to a seasonally adjusted 410,000, the Labour Department said on Wednesday. That was smack in line with the median forecast in a Reuters poll.

The drop in claims only partially unwinds the 90,000-claim increase registered the prior week. The Labour Department revised upward its estimate for new claims in the week ending Nov 10 to 451,000.

An analyst from the department said several states were still reporting an increase in claims due to Sandy, a mammoth storm that slammed into the East Coast on Oct 29.