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How US states fared on jobless aid applications

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits rose to the highest level in nearly nine months last week, though the increase likely reflected volatility around the Thanksgiving holiday.

The Labor Department says applications rose 10,000 to a seasonally adjusted 379,000. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, jumped 13,250 to 343,250. Economists mostly dismissed the increases, pointing to other job market data that suggest hiring is improving.

Here are the states with the biggest changes in applications. The state data is for the week that ended Dec. 7, one week after the national data.

States with the biggest increases:

California: Up 21,876, due to layoffs in services and manufacturing

New York: Up 14,322, due to layoffs in construction, transportation and warehousing

Pennsylvania: Up 14,004, due to layoffs in construction, transportation and administrative support services

Georgia: Up 11,582, due to layoffs in manufacturing, construction and hotels and restaurants

Texas: Up 9,761, no reason given

South Carolina: Up 5,311, due to layoffs in textiles and manufacturing

States with the largest decreases:

Ohio: Down 1,095, no reason given