At the same time, economists note that the recovery of the labor market is slowing down.
The number of applications for unemployment benefits in the US last week fell below 1 million for the second time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but this does not indicate a confident recovery in the labor market.
The drop in the number of applications to a five-month low, which the Labor Department reported on Thursday, primarily reflects a change in the methodology used to adjust for seasonality.
Last week, the number of initial applications for unemployment benefits fell by 130,000 to a seasonally adjusted 881,000. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 950,000 applications.
On an unadjusted basis, the number of applications increased by 7 to 833 591 352. The increase in unadjusted indicators, which many economists prefer to focus on, reinforces fears that the labor market recovery is slowing down.
The Federal Reserve on Wednesday reported an increase in employment but noted that it slowed in some counties, and hiring instability, especially in the service sector, increased.
Another report released on Thursday showed that job losses increased in August amid layoffs at airlines. United Airlines said on Wednesday that it is preparing to lay off 16,370 workers from October 1.
Wall Street stocks opened lower on Thursday. The dollar is stable against a basket of currencies. Treasury bond prices rose.