Charts of the day: Jobless claims as a real-time economic indicator

Jobless claims: a good coincident indicator of the US economy. If you look at changes in jobless claims it can also help you call turning points in the economy. I have done claims graphs a few times over the past six years but I haven’t posted an update in a while. So I wanted to update you on what the data are saying.
The most recent entry in my jobless-claims-as-economic-indicator posts was in October of last year when claims were hitting levels in the low 300,000s. What I wrote then was that a) “the actual level of jobless claims on a seasonally adjusted basis is largely consistent with a cyclical peak in the economy” and b) “While jobless claims can fall further still, I believe they are unlikely to fall much further”. Both of those predictions have held up (so far) as Q3 2013’s growt...


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