Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sharp Drop In First Time Claims

The poll, where we asked whether first time claims would increase or decrease in today's report:
  • increase: 62%
  • decrease: 38%
In fact, first time claims decreased by a huge number: 24,000.
New claims for jobless benefits dropped last week to their lowest level in four months, a positive sign for hiring that could bolster expectations the Federal Reserve will ease its monetary stimulus this year.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits fell by 24,000 to a seasonally adjusted 334,000, the Labor Department said on Thursday. It was the lowest reading since March and a steeper fall than analysts had expected.
Still, a four-week average of new claims, which smoothes out volatility, fell 5,250 from a week earlier.
 According to the story, July is a particularly difficult month to sort out, so we will put this number aside for the moment and wait for a) tomorrow's new jobs report; and, b) next month's initial claims, though I would think August would also be a tough month to forecast.

Whatever. Time to move on to other news.

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