• From the Associated Press:
"The number of Americans filing for jobless benefits rose last week to the highest level in 11 weeks, though layoffs remain at historically low levels.
"Applications for unemployment benefits climbed to 224,000 for the week ending Jan. 27, an increase of 9,000 from the previous week, the Labor Department reported Thursday.
"The four-week average of claims, a less volatile measure, rose by 5,250, to 207,750.
"Weekly unemployment claims are seen as a proxy for the number of US layoffs in a given week. They have remained at extraordinarily low levels despite efforts by the US Federal Reserve to cool the economy."
• From the New York Times:
"The United States delivered another bigger-than-expected batch of jobs last month, adding further evidence that the economy still has plenty of steam even as its fuel reserves dwindle.
"Employers added 353,000 jobs in January, the Labor Department reported on Friday, and the unemployment rate remained at 3.7 percent.
"After the loss of 14 percent of the nation’s jobs early in the Covid-19 pandemic, the labor market’s endurance for more than three years has surprised economists, who expected factors including the Federal Reserve’s interest rate increases to slow hiring more sharply."
• The Anchorage Daily News reports that a Costco Business Center is opening in Anchorage today, described as "the first of its kind in Alaska.
"The business center will sell many products that can’t be found at the four standard Costco warehouses in Alaska, said Bob Ripley, the store’s general manager and a longtime Costco employee in Alaska.
"The business center will focus on serving businesses like restaurants, hotels, offices and convenience stores, he said.
"But it will be open to all Costco members, and about one-third of its products will be similar to a typical Costco warehouse.
"One new feature will be two-day grocery delivery statewide through FedEx, he said. That’s designed to help people who face high prices or limited shopping options in many areas of the state, such as rural residents, he said."