Thursday, December 27, 2007

Weekly Unemployment Insurance Claims

by Bill McBride on 12/27/2007 10:45:00 AM

It's been some time since I graphed the weekly claims numbers.

From the Department of Labor:

In the week ending Dec. 22, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 349,000, an increase of 1,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 348,000. The 4-week moving average was 342,500, a decrease of 1,000 from the previous week's revised average of 343,500.
Weekly Unemployment ClaimsClick on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the weekly claims and the four week moving average of weekly unemployment claims since 1989. The four week moving average has been trending upwards for the last few months, and the level is now approaching the possible recession level (approximately 350K).

Labor related gauges are at best coincident indicators, and this indicator suggests the economy is close to recession.