The U.S. Labor Department said first-time jobless benefits claims dropped by
18,000 to 324,000 in the week that ended Saturday.
The department revised last week's estimate from 339,000 to 342,000.
With the addition, using current data, initial claims have dropped by 31,000 in two weeks and by 67,000 over the past four weeks.
The four-week rolling average for the week fell by a substantial 16,000 to 342,250.
The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending April 20 were in Michigan, up by 6,172 and Massachusetts, where claims rose by 4,101.
The largest decreases were in California with 16,681 fewer claims and New York with 6,443 fewer.
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