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US unemployment benefit applications drop to 323k

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WASHINGTON — The number of people applying for U.S. unemployment benefits fell 21,000 to a seasonally adjusted 323,000 last week, the lowest since late September and further evidence of an improving job market. The Labor Department said Thursday that the less volatile four-week average fell for the third straight week to 338,500. Both figures are near pre-recession levels. Applications are a...

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