WASHINGTON — Initial claims for U.S. state unemployment benefits were about as expected in the June 22 week, coming in at 346,000, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

Expectations for this week's report was for a claims level of 345,000, a decrease of 9,000 from the previously reported 354,000 level in June 15 week. The initial claims level in that week were revised slightly higher to 355,000.

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