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WASHINGTON — Fewer Americans filed applications for unemployment benefits last week, a sign employers are holding the line on firings even as cold weather slowed industries from manufacturing to housing.
Jobless claims declined by 3,000 to 336,000 in the week ended Feb. 15, a Labor Department report showed Thursday in Washington. The median forecast of 53 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for a decrease to 335,000. No states were estimated and there was nothing unusual in the data, a Labor Department spokesman said as the figures were released.