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Jobless claims rise, stay near 2022 highs

More Americans filed for unemployment benefits last week as unemployment continues to climb, but the labor market remains the strongest in the US economy. one of the nicer parts.

Unemployment assistance applications for the week ending July 30 reached his 260,000, an increase of 6,000 from his 254,000 downwardly revised the week before, the Labor Department said Thursday. reported to First-time applications usually reflect layoffs.

Last month's first claims hit a 2022 high of 261,000.

His four-week average of claims that evened out weekly ups and downs also rose to 254,750 from the previous week.

The total number of Americans receiving unemployment insurance in the week ending July 23 has increased by 48,000 from the previous week to 1,416,000. The figure has been close to its lowest level in 50 years for several months.

On Tuesday, the Department of Labor reported that the number of job vacancies posted by a US employer fell in his June .

Job openings fell from 11.3 million in May to a still-high 10.7 million in June. Job vacancies, which until last year had never topped 8 million in a single month, topped 11 million monthly from December to May before dropping off in June.

Applicants line up at a job fair.

added another 250,000 jobs last month. While this is a healthy number in normal times, it would be the lowest since December 2020, when the global economy was ravaged by the pandemic.

Economists expect the unemployment rate to remain at 3.6% for his fifth straight month.

Other indicators point to weakness in the US economy. The government announced last week that the economy contracted by 0.9% in the second quarter. This is her second straight quarter of contraction.

Consumer prices continue to soar,rising 9.1% year-on-year in June, the largest annual increase in 40 years. In response, the Federal Reserve raised its main borrowing rate another three-quarters of a percentage point last week. This follows a three-quarter point increase in June and another half-point increase in May.

Rising interest rates are already plummeting home sales, increasing the burden of new car purchases and pushing up credit card rates.

All of these factors paint a mixed and confusing picture of the post-pandemic economy. Inflation is hurting household budgets, forcing consumers to cut back on spending, slowing growth and raising fears of an economy slipping into recession.