The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits came in below expectations last week. On Thursday, the Labor Department reported that jobless claims totaling 576,000 for the week ending April 10. Economists polled by Dow Jones expected jobless claims to total 700,000. This figure is a massive decrease from last week's value of 769,000 and the lowest value since the pandemic decimated the US economy.

Continuing claims, the number of individuals receiving unemployment benefits for consecutive weeks, rose slightly to 3.731 million up from 3.727 million the week prior. Markets cheered and rose to all-time highs following the news.

“With a huge, better-than-expected decline in new claims for unemployment assistance, at long last the economic recovery appears to be picking up speed," Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst at Bankrate, said in an email Thursday morning. "Not only did the headline number of seasonally adjusted initial claims drop beneath the 700,000 level, but it continued on below 600,000 to the lowest since mid-March of 2020.”

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