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Job seekers line up in the hundreds to attend a job fair in Downtown Denver. (AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)

March 20 (Bloomberg) — The number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits held last week near the lowest level in almost four months, a sign the labor market continues to strengthen.

Jobless claims increased by 5,000 to 320,000 in the week ended March 15, a Labor Department report showed today in Washington. The median forecast of 51 economists surveyed by Bloomberg called for an increase to 322,000. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, fell to the lowest level since late November.

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