The US job market remains remarkably healthy, with fewer people filing for unemployment last week, despite rapid interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve this year aimed at reducing inflation.
The Labor Department said on Thursday that claims for unemployment benefits fell to 226,000 from 222,000 in the week ended Nov. 12, compared with the previous week. The four-week average rose by 2,000 to 221,000.
The total number of people receiving unemployment payments in the United States rose by 13,000 to 1.51 million for the week ending Nov. 5, its highest level in seven months, but that is not a cause for concern.
Benefit claims, which typically reflect household layoffs, have been historically low this year, leaving the Fed facing challenges in trying to tame inflation that is nearing its highest level in 40 years. Is.
Steady hiring, good wage growth and low unemployment have been good for workers, but they contribute to higher prices.
Last week, the government reported that consumer inflation rose to 7.7% in October from a year earlier, the smallest increase since January. Wholesale prices rose 8% in October from the same month a year earlier, a fourth straight decline and another sign that inflationary pressures are easing in the United States.
The annual figure is down from 8.4% in September.
While those numbers are still high in an otherwise healthy economy, they are lower than what economists expect, leading to expectations that the Fed will hike somewhat in the future.