Initial unemployment claims jumped to 339,000 from 331,000 a week ago.
Economists were expecting a reading of 330,000.
This brought the 4-week moving average up to 336,750 from 333,250 a week ago.
“Initial jobless claims probably edged up following a sizable decline,” said Citi’s Peter D’Antonio before the release. He expected a reading of 335,000. “If correct, the four-week moving average also crept higher, but nonetheless remained in the low range that prevailed over January.”