WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — New applications for unemployment benefits remained frozen last week at the level that suggests little pickup in hiring in the U.S., the latest government data showed Thursday.
Initial jobless claims were unchanged at a seasonally adjusted 374,000 in the week ended Aug. 25, the Labor Department said. Initial claims from two weeks ago were revised up to 374,000 from an original reading of 372,000, based on more complete data collected at the state level.
Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had projected claims would fall to 370,000.
The average of new claims over the past month, which smooths out short-term volatility, rose by 1,500 to 370,250.
The level of claims is a rough gauge of whether layoffs are rising or falling. Applications for unemployment benefits have hovered around 370,000 for the past five weeks, a level that indicates a modest increase in hiring at best.
Claims have shown almost no improvement after falling to a four-year low in February, reflecting a slowdown in the U.S. economy that’s prompted businesses to scale back hiring plans. The nation has added an average of only 104,000 jobs a month from May through July, less than half the number of positions created in the late winter.
The persistent threat of a financial crisis in Europe and the potential for sharp spending cuts and tax increases in the U.S. early next year have added to uncertainty.
Noting that claims are “still stubbornly high,” economist Bricklin Dwyer of BNP Paribas said the firm expects job growth to total a mild 100,000 in August.
A MarketWatch survey of economists sees job creation in August slightly higher at 120,000. That’s barely enough to keep up with the natural growth of the labor force, however, and falls well short of what’s needed to make any headway in reducing the nation’s stubbornly high unemployment rate.
The August jobs report will be released Sept. 6. July’s jobless rate was 8.3%.
Also Thursday, the Labor Department said continuing claims decreased by 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.32 million in the week ended Aug. 18. Continuing claims reflect the numbers of people already receiving benefits.
About 5.53 million people received some kind of state or federal benefit in the week ended Aug. 11, down 62,253 from the prior week. Total claims are reported with a two-week lag.
In a separate report Thursday, the Commerce Department said consumer spending rose in July by the biggest amount in five months. Personal income also rose.
It has been revealed that Kim Kardashian ex husband to be, basketball player Kris Humphries, is being sued by a woman who say he allegedly gave her herpes.
The woman, Kayla Goldberg said she met the baller in August 2010 at the Newsroom Cafe in LA. The met up later that night at a club on Sunset Blvd.
After partying, the suit claims the two had sex multiple times at his hotel. This includes multiple sex. During a portion of the sexual encounters, it was said Humphries did not wear a condom.
He didn’t give her any forewarning that he had herpes according to the suit. Goldberg was diagnosed with the STD a week later.
Along with unspecified damages, Goldberg is suing for sexual battery claiming Kris knew he had herpes with the got together and didn’t even tell her.
Hopefully, Kim K is okay.