More People Sought Unemployment Aid Last Week

unemployment benefits applications roseBy Christopher S. Rugaber

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits last week rose slightly last week, a sign that the job market remains weak.

The Labor Department says weekly applications increased to a seasonally adjusted 401,000.

The uptick in applications comes after they plummeted 33,000 in the previous week. That drop partly resulted from technical difficulties with the department's seasonal adjustment process.

Still, the rebound was much smaller than economists had expected and applications are trending lower: The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell for the second straight week to 414,000, its lowest level in a month.

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