The number of people filing first-time clams for unemployment insurance fell by 27,000 last week, to 341,000 from 368,000 the week before.
The Employment and Training Administration also reports that the "4-week moving average was 352,500, an increase of 1,500." That average, in theory, gives a better picture of the trend.
According to Reuters, the drop last week was larger than expected and points to "a continued steady improvement in labor market conditions." The slight uptick in the 4-week average, though, underscores that the improvement appears to be slow.