WASHINGTON, Dec. 31 (Xinhua) -- The number of initial jobless claims in the United States fell to 787,000 last week, the lowest level in a month, the Labor Department reported on Thursday.
In the week ending Dec. 26, the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits decreased by 19,000 from the previous week's upwardly revised level of 806,000, according to a report released by the department's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
In the week ending Oct. 17, the figure dipped below 800,000 for the first time since late March, and has been largely declining in the following weeks, but the trend was reversed in the weeks ending Nov. 14 and Nov. 21, and then in the weeks ending Dec. 5 and Dec. 12 amid COVID-19 spikes.
The BLS report also showed that the number of people continuing to collect regular state unemployment benefits in the week ending Dec. 19 declined by 103,000 to 5.2 million.
The total number of people claiming benefits in all programs -- state and federal combined -- for the week ending Dec. 12 decreased by 799,841 but remained elevated at 19.56 million, signaling a stalled recovery in the labor market.