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Saturday February 6th, 2016 2:23AM

Applications for US unemployment aid slip to 298K

By The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) -- The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits slipped 1,000 last week to a seasonally adjusted 298,000.<br /> <br /> The Labor Department says the four-week average, a less volatile measure, dropped to 299,750. That's just 6,000 higher than four weeks ago, when the average fell to the lowest level in more than eight years.<br /> <br /> Applications are a proxy for layoffs. When employers hold onto their workers, it suggests they are more confident in the economy and could step up hiring.<br /> <br /> The applications data is the latest sign that the job market is steadily healing. Average job gains since February have been the best in eight years.
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