Some 530,000 Americans filed jobless claims last week, the third-lowest level this year.
Israeli restrictions and dependence on foreign aid have stifled the all-important business sector.
The US and Israel agreed this week to establish a joint committee on how to implement a freeze outlined in the 2003 road map.
On Thursday, Israel commemorated its 1967 capture of East Jerusalem – an area where Jewish settlements and Arab home demolitions could complicate Palestinian aspirations for statehood.
Readers write about why Obama should not follow Bush's example in the Middle East, how the US should fix itself first and not Gaza, music sites that do not share files free of charge, and why gasoline consumption should be taxed rather than miles driven.
Test your knowledge. Can you answer these questions about the presidents of the United States?
An estimated 1.3 million people visited the West Bank this year, boosting the troubled economy.