The U.S. Labor Department released its jobless claims figures on Thursday. The number of initial jobless claims in the week ending February 20 in the U.S. increased by 10,000 to 272,000 from 262,000 in the previous week.
Analysts had expected jobless claims to rise to 270,000.
Jobless claims remained below 300,000 the 51st straight week. This threshold is associated with the strengthening of the labour market.
Continuing jobless claims declined by 19,000 to 2,253,000 in the week ended February 13.