More good news for GOP presidential candidates to spin negatively.
Reporting from Washington— In another sign that the job market is gaining momentum, the number of workers filing for unemployment benefits fell further last week — down to levels last seen in the early months of the recession.
The Labor Department said Thursday that first-time jobless claims dropped by 15,000 to 358,000 last week, although week-to-week changes can be volatile.
Initial jobless claims averaged 418,000 in the same four-week period last year. The decline reflects the slowdown in layoffs at companies as the economy has improved and employers have shown a greater willingness to hold on to their existing workers.
Earlier this week, the Labor Department reported an increase in job openings. And last Friday, in the single most important monthly gauge of the economy, the government said employers across a broad spectrum of industries added a net total of 243,000 jobs in January, the most in nine months.