Initial unemployment claims drop throughout February, says DOL

Fewer workers found their way to the unemployment office to file initial claims during the second half of February, as the latest Weekly Claims Report released on Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor showed more declines.

The latest report showed that number of initial unemployment claims declined by 29,000 to a seasonally adjusted figure of 469,000 during the week ending February 27. Interestingly, the unadjusted data for the week showed that initial claims had increased by 17,128 to 471,720.

For the week ending February 20, the DOL survey also found that the insured unemployment rate had decreased slightly by 0.1 percentage point to 3.5 percent.

In turn, the number of workers currently using insured unemployment was 4.5 million, a decrease of 134,000 from the week before. The 4-week moving average declined during the week as well, falling by 29,250 to 4.575 million.

The fiscal year-to-date average of seasonally adjusted weekly insured unemployment stood at 5.186 million.