The number of Americans seeking unemployment aid fell last week to a level consistent with steady job gains. The Labor Department said weekly applications dropped 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 366,000.
Here are the states with the biggest changes in unemployment aid applications. The state data are for the week ended Jan. 26, one week behind the national data.
States with the biggest decreases:
California: Down 20,414, due to fewer layoffs in services
Texas: Down 5,082, no reason given
Illinois: Down 4,865, due to fewer layoffs in construction and administrative support
Florida: Down 3,570, due to fewer layoffs in agriculture, construction, manufacturing, trade, retail and services
Michigan: Down 2,795, due to fewer layoffs in administrative support
Ohio: Down 2,588, due to fewer layoffs in manufacturing
State with the biggest increases:
North Carolina: Up 2,030, due to layoffs in the construction, petroleum, and building material industries.