Thursday, March 01, 2018

Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims decrease to 210,000, 4-Week Average lowest since 1969

by Bill McBride on 3/01/2018 08:34:00 AM

The DOL reported:

In the week ending February 24, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 210,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week's revised level. This is the lowest level for initial claims since December 6, 1969 when it was 202,000. The previous week's level was revised down by 2,000 from 222,000 to 220,000. The 4-week moving average was 220,500, a decrease of 5,000 from the previous week's revised average. This is the lowest level for this average since December 27, 1969 when it was 219,750. The previous week's average was revised down by 500 from 226,000 to 225,500.

Claims taking procedures in Puerto Rico and in the Virgin Islands have still not returned to normal.
emphasis added
The previous week was revised down.

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 decreased to 220,500.

This was lower than the consensus forecast. The low level of claims suggest relatively few layoffs.