UNEMPLOYMENT CLAIMS RISE: New claims for jobless benefits rose last week by 18,000 to 460,000, the Labor Department said Thursday. Wall Street economists had expected a drop.
SEASONAL DISTORTIONS: The increase is a sign that jobs still remain scarce even as the economy recovers. Some of the increase may also have resulted from the Easter holiday, which a Labor Department analyst said is difficult to seasonally adjust for because it falls on different weeks each year.
TREND STILL DOWN: Claims have dropped in four of the past six weeks and economists say they are likely to soon resume their decline.