© Bloomberg. MIAMI, FLORIDA – FEBRUARY 04: A ‘Now Hiring’ sign is posted in front of a Popeye’s restaurant on February 04, 2021 in Miami, Florida. The Labor Department announced weekly unemployment claims declined to 779,000 last week. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
(Bloomberg) — Applications for U.S. state unemployment benefits dropped for the third week in a row, another incremental highlight in the labor market’s recovery.
Initial unemployment claims in regular state programs totaled in the period ended Aug. 7, down 12,000 from the prior week, Labor Department data showed Thursday. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for 375,000 new applications.
Continuing claims for state benefits fell to in the week ended July 31.
Jobless claims have been largely falling this year as a pickup in economic activity strengthens business conditions and leads to a record number of job openings. While initial claims are broadly expected to continue declining in the coming months, the spreading delta variant poses a risk to the pace of recovery.
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