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In the week ended Aug. 16, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial unemployment claims was 432,000, the U.S. Department of Labor reported. The four-week moving average was 445,750, an increase of 7,250, or 1.7%, from the previous week's revised average of 438,500. The increase was lower than last week's increase of 4.6%.
The Department of Labor recently began a program to locate those eligible for jobless benefits, and that likely boosted the number of jobless claims, according to press reports.