Jobless Aid Claims Rise Ahead of Obama Speech

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Applications for unemployment benefits rose slightly last week, with an additional 2,000 people seeking aid.

According to Thursday's Labor Department report, that brings the total number of jobless applications to a seasonally adjusted 414,000 - the lowest since February.

Economic experts say applications should be below 375,000 to indicate sustainable job growth.         
     
"The report continues to say what the Fed's Beige Book told us yesterday and the jobs report told us last week, which is that people really aren't laying off workers in larger numbers, but they aren't hiring either," John Canally, economist at LPL Financial, told The Financial Times.

The news comes as President Obama prepares to unveil his new jobs plan Thursday night, designed to inject $300 billion back into the economy. 

Thursday's report "puts more pressure on the Fed and on the president tonight to spark the confidence that will be used to create jobs," Canally said.

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