Jobless claims in the week ending May 19 dipped slightly to 370,000, a decrease of 2,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 372,000, the Labor Department announced. The four-week moving average, a less volatile number that flattens out week-to-week fluctuations in the data, was also 370,000, a decrease of 5,500 from the previous week. Initial claims for unemployment benefits have remained flat over the past month, but have remained in the 375,000 range, the benchmark analysts consider to signal strong enough hiring to lower the unemployment rate. The number of Americans filing for continuing unemployment claims during the week ending May 12 was 3,260,000, a decrease of 29,000 from the preceding week. The four-week moving average was 3,271,500, a decrease of 17,250 from the prior week. The total number of people claiming benefits in all programs for the week ending May 5 was 6,168,620, a decrease of 105,004 from the previous week. States reported 2,630,507 persons claiming emergency unemployment benefits for the week ending May 5, a decrease of 35,500 from the prior week. There were 3,411,860 claimants in the comparable week in 2011. The largest increases in initial jobless claims for the week ending May 12 were in Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, North Carolina, and Tennessee. The largest decreases were in California, Illinois, Missouri, New York, and Texas.