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First-time jobless claims in state decline 19%
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First-time jobless claims in state decline 19%

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First-time jobless claims in the state declined 19% last week compared to the previous seven-day period, according to a government report.

The U.S. Department of Labor reported 1,427 initial claims were filed for unemployment benefits the week ending Saturday. The prior week, an upwardly revised 1,762 first-time claims were logged.

Meanwhile, continued claims, those filed after one week of unemployment, were nearly flat, declining 1% from an upwardly revised 12,894 the week ending Dec. 18 to 12,714 the following week.

“Oklahoma has entered 2022 from a position of economic strength,” said Shelley Zumwalt, Oklahoma Employment Security Commission executive director. “We are continuing to see a decline in unemployment across the state.

“For November, all 77 Oklahoma counties saw a decline compared to November 2020, which demonstrates the overall economic recovery and growth statewide. OESC is looking forward to this new year to continue to improve the services we offer Oklahomans and employers, with a focus on continuing to grow the workforce.”

Other jobless claims numbers were mixed.

The four-week moving average of initial claims increased slightly, from 2,078 the week ending Dec. 18 to 2,090 the following week.

The four-week moving average of continued claims declined for the third consecutive week, or from 14,066 the week ending Dec. 11 to 13,939 the following week.

Three of Oklahoma’s neighboring states — Arkansas, Missouri and New Mexico — saw declines in initial claims last week while Colorado, Kansas and Texas all reported increases in initial claims.

Nationally, initial claims were a seasonally adjusted 207,000 for the week ending Saturday, a 7,000 claim increase from the previous week.

About one in six initial unemployment claims were filed in California the week ending Saturday, according to nonseasonally adjusted data.


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