Thursday, May 19, 2016

Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims decrease to 278,000

by Bill McBride on 5/19/2016 08:33:00 AM

The DOL reported:

In the week ending May 14, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 278,000, a decrease of 16,000 from the previous week's unrevised level of 294,000. The 4-week moving average was 275,750, an increase of 7,500 from the previous week's unrevised average of 268,250.

There were no special factors impacting this week's initial claims. This marks 63 consecutive weeks of initial claims below 300,000, the longest streak since 1973.
The previous week was unrevised.

The following graph shows the 4-week moving average of weekly claims since 1971.

Click on graph for larger image.


The dashed line on the graph is the current 4-week average. The four-week average of weekly unemployment claims increased to 275,750.

This was close to the consensus forecast. The low level of claims suggests relatively few layoffs.