Reuters August 26, 2010

New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits fell more that expected last week but a measure of underlying labour market trends rose to a nine-month high.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits fell 31,000 to a seasonally adjusted 473,000 in the week ended August 21, the Labour Department said.
The four-week average of new claims, considered a better measure of underlying labour market trends as it irons out week-to-week volatility, rose 3,250 to 486,750, the highest since late November.
Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast initial weekly jobless claims slipping to 490,000 from the previously reported 500,000 the prior week, which was revised up to  504,000 in Thursday's report.
A Labour Department official said there were no special factors influencing the report.