US weekly new jobless claims are at their lowest level since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. There was a bigger-than-expected drop in unemployment claims and the total for the week ending March 20th was 684,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Continuing jobless claims are down to 3.8 million and the February unemployment rate was 6.2%. There are a number of factors contributing to the rise in employment, chief among them vaccinations allowing some sectors to start getting back to normal. This is likely a trend that will continue into the summer if indeed cases continue downwards and the country gets sufficiently immunized. Goldman Sachs, for what it’s worth, predicts that by many indicators the overall economy will be strong in the fourth quarter of 2021.
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