The Labor Department said Thursday seasonally-adjusted initial jobless claims went up by 13,000 to 380,000 the week ended April 7, the highest level since the start of the year.
“The blip in claims is due to Easter. It came in well above expectations. We had an earlier Easter this year. I expect it to come down next week,” John Canally, investment strategist at LPL Financial, told Reuters.
The economy only created 120,000 new jobs in March, the lowest number since last October.
The unemployment rate now hovers at a three year low of 8.2 percent, leading some economists to believe more and more people are dropping out of the labor force as they give up hope in finding a job.