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Unemployment applications down in December


Fewer Americans filed applications for unemployment benefits in December, according to statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor.

The average number of applications dropped to 410,750 per week, the lowest level since July 2008. Claims for the week ended Jan. 1 rose by 18,000, to 409,000.

“Employers are getting to the point where they are becoming a little more confident about the strength of the recovery,” said Omair Sharif, an economist with RBS Securities Inc. in Stamford, Conn., in an interview with Bloomberg.

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