The Associated PressSuperstorm Sandy caused a spike in the number of people seeking U.S. unemployment benefits last week. Applications surged by 78,000 to a seasonally adjusted 439,000, the highest level in 18 months. Economists say the increase is temporary and applications should fall in a few weeks after the storm's impact fades. Here are the states with the biggest increases and decreases in applications. The state-by-state figures are for the week ended Nov. 3. States with the biggest increases: Pennsylvania: Up 7,766, due to layoffs in the construction, transportation, manufacturing and food and beverage industries Ohio: Up 6,450, due to layoffs in the automobile and manufacturing industries New Jersey: Up 5,675, as Superstorm Sandy caused temporary job losses in construction, hotels and restaurants, and manufacturing Michigan: Up 2,373, no reason given Connecticut: Up 1,783, due to applications caused by Superstorm Sandy. North Carolina: Up 1,725, due to layoffs in the metal, textile, machinery and restaurant industries States with the biggest decreases: California: Down 8,149, due to fewer layoffs in services and other industries New York: Down 2,241, due to fewer layoffs in retail and healthcare. Power outages from Hurricane Sandy prevented state from receiving some applications.