Unemployment insurance claims increase in early April, says DOL

New data released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor has found that initial unemployment claims saw an uptick as April began, reversing the trend of steady declines that were seen throughout much of 2010.

Following a decrease in initial unemployment insurance claims of approximately 6,000 one week earlier, data for the week ending April 3 found that the number of claims stood at 460,000, an increase of 18,000 compared to the week prior.

The data was in stark contrast to new information released by the department regarding the week ending March 27, which found the insured unemployment rate had moved for the first time in weeks as it shed 0.1 percentage points to hit 3.5 percent.

The rate’s decline was led by the shedding of 131,000 people from the total number of Americans using insured unemployment, which fell to 4.55 million for the week ending March 27. The four-week moving average number of those on unemployment also saw a decrease of 36,000 as it declined to 4.648 million.