New jobless claims increase higher than expected

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The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits increased last week as the US economic recovery trudged onward without fresh stimulus.

New US weekly jobless claims totaled an unadjusted 870,000 for the week that ended on Saturday, the Labor Department reported Thursday. That reading surpassed the median economist estimate of 840,000 compiled by Bloomberg and marked an increase from the prior week.

Continuing claims, which track the aggregate total of Americans receiving unemployment benefits, reached 12.6 million for the week that ended on September 12. The reading is a slight decrease from the prior week’s revised number but exceeded economists’ median estimate of 12.3 million.

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