Initial jobless claims decreased by 37,000 to 335,000 last week to the lowest level in five years, the Labor Department said Thursday.
Applications for jobless benefits for the week ended Saturday are at the lowest level since Jan. 19, 2008, Labor figures show.
The initial claims figure was lower than economists’ forecast of 369,000, Bloomberg News reported.
The four-week moving average, a less-volatile measure, rose to 359,250 last week from 366,000.
Continuing jobless claims for the previous week rose by 87,000 to 3.21 million.