Gasoline prices at a station in Encinitas, Calif., earlier this week.
Consumer prices were flat in January, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says. But a driving force behind that good news has reversed itself since then. According to BLS, gasoline prices fell 3 percent last month. In February, though, gas prices have risen sharply. So watch for next month's BLS report on consumer prices to tell a different story.
For the most part, the number of weekly claims has stayed within a range of 350,000 to 400,000 since the fall of 2011. They've been another in a series of signs that the U.S. labor market is only slowly recovering from the 2007-09 recession.
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