US Jobless Claims Rise; Growth Slows

Posted May 31st, 2012 at 9:55 am (UTC-5)
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The number of people signing up for unemployment aid in the United States rose by 10,000 last week, evidence that the U.S. job market remains sluggish.

Thursday's report from the Labor Department says 383,000 people filed first-time claims.

Continued problems in the job market are one result of slow U.S. economic growth, which hit a meager 1.9 percent annual rate in the first three months of this year.

Thursday's data show growth in the first quarter was slower than economists had first estimated.

Government experts publish another closely-watched economic indicator Friday, the unemployment rate.

Economists surveyed by news agencies predict the jobless rate for May will be unchanged at 8.1 percent. They also estimate that the economy will have a net gain of 150,000 jobs. While that is more jobs than the previous month, experts say it is not enough to keep up with new entrants to the work force or enough to cut the jobless rate.