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Jobless claims in Washington state drop

December 23, 2020 GMT

SEATTLE (AP) — Fewer people in Washington state filed for unemployment benefits last week than the week before.

Washingtonians filed 17,596 new, or “initial,” claims for regular unemployment benefits last week, a decrease of nearly 10% from the previous week, the state Employment Security Department reported Wednesday. The Seattle Times reports the claims data, normally released Thursday, posted early because of the Christmas holiday.

Nationally, initial claims fell 10% last week to 803,000, the Labor Department said Wednesday.

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Although new claims declined in Washington, they remain roughly twice as high as the same week last year. The total number of Washingtonians receiving unemployment benefits last week was 286,102, a decrease of 3.5% from the previous week, ESD reported.