Initial jobless claims fall to a 17-month low


Initial jobless claims of 432,000 for the week ended 26 Dec 2009 were the lowest since July 2008. The 4-week average is now 460,250, the lowest since September 2008. If you look at the following two graphs, you can see that initial claims are plummeting.



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The second chart shows that the change in initial jobless claims is well into recovery territory. Average unadjusted weekly claims are running at 120,000 below last year’s level. Seasonally-adjusted claims are running at only 80,000 below last year’s numbers – evidence to me that the headline adjusted numbers are deceptively high. 

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Either way, you don’t get that sort of drop without a technical recovery.  So, I may be tipping my hand on the last post here, but I don’t see how one could argue we aren’t in recovery when even the employment market reflects this.  It is the enormous debt loads and the structurally high levels of unemployment which makes this technical recovery an unhappy one.



Unemployment Insurance Weekly Claims Report – U.S. Department of Labor

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