Thursday, October 08, 2020

Weekly Initial Unemployment Claims at 840,000

by Calculated Risk on 10/08/2020 08:38:00 AM

Special technical note on California (two week pause).

The DOL reported:

In the week ending October 3, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 840,000, a decrease of 9,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 12,000 from 837,000 to 849,000. The 4-week moving average was 857,000, a decrease of 13,250 from the previous week's revised average. The previous week's average was revised up by 3,000 from 867,250 to 870,250.
emphasis added
This does not include the 464,437 initial claims for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) that was down from 508,707 the previous week. (There are some questions on PUA numbers).

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 857,000.

The previous week was revised up.

The second graph shows seasonally adjust continued claims since 1967 (lags initial by one week).

At the worst of the Great Recession, continued claims peaked at 6.635 million, but then steadily declined.

Continued claims decreased to 10,976,000 (SA) from 11,979,000 (SA) last week and will likely stay at a high level until the crisis abates.

Note: There are an additional 11,394,832 receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) that decreased from 11,828,338 the previous week (there are questions about these numbers). This is a special program for business owners, self-employed, independent contractors or gig workers not receiving other unemployment insurance.