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U.S. jobless claims lower
July 19, 2001: 8:49 a.m. ET

Weekly claims fall below forecasts but continued claims continue to climb
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NEW YORK (CNNfn) - New jobless claims were weaker than expected and below Wall Street forecasts last week, according to a government report Thursday, after soaring to their highest level in 9 years the previous week.

New claims for state unemployment benefits fell to 414,000 in the week ended July 14 from a revised 449,000 the prior week, the Labor Department reported. Analysts surveyed by had forecast new claims of 430,000.

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The four-week moving average of new claims, considered a better gauge of jobless trends, rose to 414,500 from the previous week's revised 412,000. Economists watch the four-week moving average more closely since it smoothes fluctuations in the weekly data.

Continued claims -- those by workers who already have claimed at least a week of benefits rose to 3.112 million in the week ended July 7. Those data, the latest available, came after a revised reading of 3.03 million the prior week. graphic