New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week, lifted by striking Verizon Communications workers, a government report showed on Thursday.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits rose 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 417,000, the Labor Department said, but still nowhere near levels that would signal a recession.

Striking Verizon workers filed 8,500 claims for jobless benefits last week, after submitting 12,500 applications the previous week, which covered the period for the August nonfarm payrolls survey.

That suggests that the strike would have a negative affect on the payrolls count, which will be reported on Sept. 2. The strike against Verizon has ended.

Continue reading on