The U.S. Labor Department is out with its weekly jobless claims and this is effectively the last-look figure before Friday’s key unemployment and non-farm payrolls data. Jobless claims rose by 8,000 to 362,000. The prior week’s reading of 351,000 claims was revised to 354,000. Bloomberg was expecting a reading of about 351,000 for this last week.
Another aspect to watch is the four-week moving average of claims, which rose by 250 to 355,000. The army of unemployed, measured by the continuing jobless claims with a one-week lag, posted an increase of 10,000 to 3,416,000.
Today’s data is unlikely to make any real changes for Friday’s key unemployment data. Bloomberg has estimates of 8.3% unemployment and non-farm payrolls are expected to be 204,000 versus 243,000 originally reported in January.
JON C. OGG