Jobless claims fell by 9,000 to 267,000 from March 27 to April 2, according to a report released by the U.S. Labor Department on Thursday.

The 4-week average, up 3,500 to 266,750, is trending only slightly higher compared to three weeks of 259,000 levels earlier in March.

Econoday estimated forecast claims rose 19,000 to nearly 2.2 million in the March 26 week though the 4-week average is down slightly to 2.189 million.

This average compares favorably with the month-ago comparison showing a sizable decrease of nearly 40,000.

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Jobless Claims

(Source: Econoday)

Initial jobless claims inched higher the last several of weeks but are still holding near record lows. 

Forecasters see initial claims slipping 4,000 in the April 2 week to 272,000.

Jobless claims for the week of March 19 increased to 265,000, up from 259,000.