11 March 2021

Better, But Still Not Good, Initial Claims Data

Initial claims fell from 754,000 to 712,000 last week, indicating an improving, though still dismal, job market:

New filings for unemployment benefits last week neared their lowest level since the pandemic fueled a surge in layoffs last March, adding to evidence of renewed labor-market growth.

Jobless claims, a proxy for layoffs, fell to a seasonally adjusted 712,000 in the week ended March 6, down about 200,000 from an early January peak and close to a pandemic low point reached last November.

The four-week moving average, which smooths out volatility in week-to-week numbers, was 759,000 for the week ended March 6, slightly higher than the previous pandemic low recorded last November. The weekly average in 2019, the year before the pandemic started, was 218,000.

The recently passed $1.9 Trillion stimulus bill should lead to further improvements. 

It should be noted though that the employment population ratio is still crap, and improving VERY slowly.


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