Weekly Jobless Claims Drop to 553,000; GDP Posts 6.4 Percent First-Quarter Gain

by Julia Sanders

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A total of 553,000 Americans filed for first-time unemployment insurance assistance for the week that ended April 24, the U.S. Department of Labor reported Thursday. These claims were a decrease of 13,000 from last week’s revised unemployment claims, which was revised up by 19,000 from 547,000 to 566,000.

In the first quarter of 2021, the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annualized rate of 6.4 percent, which was the second-highest growth since 2003 but slightly below the 6.5 percent predicted by economists surveyed by Dow Jones. The fastest growth of GDP was seen in the third quarter of last year (an annualized rate of 33.1 percent). The first-quarter GDP growth includes the influence of the second round of stimulus checks issued by the government.

According to CNBC, the Bureau of Economic Research says that the United States is still not out of a recession yet due to how GDP in total has not passed last year’s peak. The news outlet also reports that while 14 million Americans have returned, the Federal Reserve says the U.S. workforce is still short about 8.4 million jobs compared to pre-pandemic times.

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