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U.S. jobless claims 243,000, layoffs near 45-year low

Staff Writer |
The number of Americans who applied for unemployment benefits jumped by 20,000 to 243,000 in early March, but layoffs remained near a 45-year low.

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Economists polled by MarketWatch has expected initial jobless claims to total 238,000 in the seven days stretching from February 26 to March 4.

A week earlier, new claims had fallen to the lowest level since March 1973.

And they’ve come under the key 300,000 threshold for 105 straight weeks, the second longest streak since the mid-1960s.

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