US jobless figure jumps

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The Independent Online
US jobless figure jumps

New jobless claims in the US jumped to 417,000 last week, the highest weekly figure since September 1992. Half the states reported a rise of more than 1,000 in the number of claimants. The total for the previous week was revised up by 29,000 to 399,000, correcting a Labor Department error in entering the figures on to the computer.

Analysts were astonished by the size of the increase, which far exceeded expectations. Financial markets stayed nervous about the aftermath of Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan's assessment of the economy on Wednesday, which sent Wall Street sharply down. Share and bond prices moved slightly lower in yesterday's morning session.