Unemployment insurance claims last week by the newly laid-off rose to 439,000, an increase of 2,000 from last week’s revised figure of 437,000. But the four-week average, a less volatile number, fell 4,000 to 443,000, the lowest level since 2008.
About 4.2 million people overall were receiving continuing unemployment insurance benefits (i.e. it wasn’t their first week receiving a check) the week ended November 6, the most recent week data were available. That seems like a big number, but it’s actually the lowest level since November 22, 2008, reports the WSJ.