The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits unexpectedly fell last week. The numbers suggest labor market conditions remain solid, despite slowing job growth.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 211,000 for the week ended March 23, the Labor Department said. Data for the prior week were revised to show 5,000 fewer applications received than previously reported. The unemployment rate is currently at 3.8%. The moderation in job growth also reflecting a shortage of workers and softening economic growth as the stimulus from a $1.5 trillion tax cut package fades.