Applications for U.S. state unemployment benefits retreated last week to the lowest in a month in a broad-based decline, pointing to ongoing improvement in the labor market.
Initial unemployment claims in regular state programs totaled 326,000 in the week ended Oct. 2, a decrease of 38,000 from the prior week, Labor Department data showed Thursday. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for a decrease to 348,000 applications.
Continuing claims for state benefits fell to 2.7 million in the week ended Sept. 25.
Layoffs have eased amid an improving economy, with employers now focused on hiring ...