APPLICATIONS DIP: The number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits fell only slightly last week to a seasonally adjusted 386,000, the Labor Department said. That's down from 392,000 the previous week, which was revised up.
THE CONTEXT: Weekly unemployment applications are a measure of the pace of layoffs. When applications rise above 375,000, it generally means that hiring isn't strong enough to rapidly lower the unemployment rate
THE OUTLOOK: Hiring slowed sharply in April and May. Based on the level of applications, most economists don't expect job growth picked up much in June.