The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits fell last week to the lowest level in six weeks, a hopeful sign that hiring has picked up. Weekly applications dropped by 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 374,000.
Here are the states with the biggest changes in applications. The state data are for the week ended June 23, one week behind the national data.
States with the biggest decreases:
• Pennsylvania: Down 7,865, due to fewer layoffs in transportation, entertainment, hotels and restaurants, and health care
• Maryland: Down 2,265, no reason given
• Ohio: Down 1,588, no reason given
• Wisconsin: Down 1,544, no reason given
• Georgia: Down 1,398, due to fewer layoffs in manufacturing, health care, administrative support services and hotels and restaurants
States with the biggest increases:
• California: Up 8,239, due to layoffs in the service industry
• New Jersey: Up 4,894, due to layoffs in education, transportation and warehousing, and hotels and restaurants
• Massachusetts: Up 3,873, due to layoffs in education, transportation, restaurants, and administrative support services
• Michigan: Up 3,692, no reason given
• Connecticut: Up 2,598, due to layoffs in restaurants and transportation
• New York: Up 2,094, due to layoffs in restaurants, health care and education