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Economic Report: Jobless claims climb to one-month high of 222,000

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Years of steady hiring have pulled the U.S. unemployment rate down to a two-decade low and reduced layoffs to the lowest level in half a century.

The numbers: The rate of layoffs in the U.S. rose in early May to the highest level in a month, but so-called initial jobless claims are still near the lowest levels in half a century.

Initial jobless claims rose by 11,000 to 222,000 in the week ended May 12, the government said Thursday. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast a 215,000 reading.

The more stable monthly average of claims, meanwhile, fell by 2,750 to 213,250.

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