US jobless claims rose last week
Job seekers check out opportunities at a jobs fair in Chicago (AFP)

New claims for US unemployment insurance benefits increased last week but held to the recent low range that suggests increasing tightness in the jobs market, Labor Department figures showed Thursday.

Initial jobless claims rose to 290,000 in the week ending November 8 from 278,000 last week.

The four-week average for claims, a sign of the pace of layoffs, was 285,000, compared with 344,000 a year ago.

Last week the government reported another fall in the overall unemployment rate to 5.8 percent, with job creation holding a pace above 200,000 a month for the ninth consecutive month.