WASHINGTON – Seasonally adjusted initial jobless claims declined to 388,000 for the week ending April 21, while continuing claims rose to 3.315 million for the previous week, the Labor Department reported Thursday.

The 388,000 of initial claims were down 1,000 from the previous week's revised level of 389,000, originally reported as 386,000.

Continuing claims rose 3,000 from the previous week's revised level of 3.312 million for the week ending April 14, originally reported as 3.297 million.

The 388,000 of initial claims were higher than the median estimate of 375,000 projected by economists polled by Thomson Reuters, and the 3.315 million of continuing claims were higher than their median estimate of 3.290 million.

The decrease in initial claims was led by large decreases in claims from Washington, Pennsylvania, Oregon, and Indiana, the Labor Department reported. Those were partially offset by increases in claims stemming from layoffs in the transportation, manufacturing, and service industries in New York, California, and Georgia.

The four-week moving average for initial claims was 381,750, the highest since it was reported at that same level Jan. 7. That figure was up 6,250 from the previous week's revised average of 375,500, originally reported as 374,750.

The four-week moving average for continuing claims was 3.312 million, the lowest since Aug. 9, 2008, when it was 3.288 million. The figure was 9,750 lower than the preceding week's revised average of 3.322 million, originally reported as 3.318 million.

The Labor Department reported that all states provided estimates.

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