Unemployment claims jumped to 447,000 in week of Jan. 4


WASHINGTON -- New claims for state unemployment insurance rose 46,000 to 447,000 in the week ended Jan. 11, the Labor Department said today. Those figures were seasonally adjusted.

Initial claims often rise during the week following a holiday week, when there are fewer days available in which to file claims. The Jan. 4 week included the New Year's holiday, when most state and federal offices were closed.

In the week ended Jan. 4, a total of 3,442,000 persons were receiving state unemployment benefits, up 184,000 from the previous week's total. A Dow Jones consensus of economists had expected a 57,000 increase in jobless claims in the Jan. 11 week.

On an unadjusted basis, initial claims rose 239,800 to 852,900 during the week ended Jan. 11, the department said.

In recent months, many major American companies have announced dramatic restructurings, including GM, which plans to cut 74,000 jobs; IBM, 49,000 jobs; Citicorp, 17,000 jobs; United Technologies, 13,900 jobs.

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