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Weekly Jobless Claims Rise Slightly

The number of first-time claims for unemployment insurance rose by 18,000 last week, the Employment and Training Administration says. At 354,000, the number remained at a level consistent with modest job growth.

According to the agency, the four-week moving average, a less volatile indicator, rose 2,500, to 348,250.

The AP reports:

"Applications are a proxy for layoffs. Since January, they have fallen 6 percent. That suggests companies are cutting fewer jobs.

"At the same time, hiring has been steady, despite an increase in taxes on Jan. 1 and steep federal spending cuts that began in March. Solid consumer spending and a rebound in housing have helped the economy weather the fiscal drag.

"Jennifer Lee, an economist at BMO Capital Markets, said the increase in applications makes it less likely that hiring will accelerate this month but job growth remains moderate."

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'Kids Love To Be Scared': Louis Sachar On Balancing Fun And Fear

The award-winning author of Holes has just published a new novel for young readers, called Fuzzy Mud. It mixes middle-school social puzzles with a more sinister mystery: a rogue biotech threat.
NPR

Confronting A Shortage Of Eggs, Bakers Get Creative With Replacements

Eggs are becoming more expensive and scarce recently because so many chickens have died from avian flu. So bakers, in particular, are looking for cheaper ingredients that can work just as well.
NPR

Jon Stewart's Private White House Meetings

Comedian Jon Stewart was called to the White House on at least two occasions for private meetings with President Obama, according to Politico. NPR's Arun Rath speaks with reporter Darren Samuelsohn.
NPR

An App Tells Painful Stories Of Slaves At Monticello's Mulberry Row

A new app uses geolocation to bring to life a lesser-known section of Thomas Jefferson's Virginia estate — Mulberry Row, which was the bustling enclave of skilled slaves who worked at Monticello.

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