Seasonally adjusted initial claims for U.S. unemployment benefits rose by 3,000 to 231,000 in the week ended June 30 from the previous week's revised level of 228,000, U.S. Labor Department data showed.
A consensus forecast on Econoday had predicted first-time jobless claims would drop to 223,000.
The four-week moving average came in at 224,500, up 2,250 from the previous week's revised average of 222,250.
The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 1.2% in the week ended June 23. Insured unemployment during that week rose to 1,739,000 from the previous week's revised level of 1,707,000.