Unemployment Insurance Claims Rise

April 5, 2001 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - In the week ending March 31, the number of claims for first-time unemployment insurance benefits increased to the highest level in two years.

Total claims were a greater than anticipated 383,000, according to the Department of Labor.

The number of Americans who have already claimed a week of benefits rose to levels last seen in January 1997, moving the four-week moving average of the claims, which smoothes out weekly fluctuations, up 0.06%.

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More closely watched will be tomorrow’s release of the March employment figures, a key factor in the Federal Reserve’s calculation in setting monetary policy, which economists polled by Reuters, see rising to 4.3% from the previous month’s 4.2%.