Initial US jobless claims fell by 7,000 to 222,000 in the week ending February 17, marking the second lowest level since the end of the 2007-2009 recession.
After falling for years, initial jobless claims are now down to levels last seen in the early 1970s. Most firms continue to hire and the unemployment rate is at a 17-year low.
The previous week's level was revised down by 1,000 from 230,000 to 229,000. The four-week moving average was 226,000, a decrease of 2,250 from the previous week's revised average.
Claims taking procedures in Puerto Rico and in the Virgin Islands have still not returned to normal. The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 1.3% for the week ending February 10, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the previous week's unrevised rate.
The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending February 10 was 1,875,000, a decrease of 73,000 from the previous week's revised level.