The Labor Department’s report on weekly jobless claims is the next to last report before the coming unemployment data in a week and one day. The latest claims figure was down 6,000 to 386,000 after the prior week was revised 4,000 higher to 392,000. Bloomberg was calling for a consensus of 385,000.
While this is worse than expected, it is still just more of the same for a weakening jobs report next week. With this being an election year it matters even more. In an effort to smooth out the weekly data, the four-week average fell by 750 to 386,750.
The army of the unemployed, measured by the continuing jobless claims (with a one-week lag), was down by 15,000 to 3.296 million. The unemployment rate for insured workers has been stuck at 2.6 percent for three months.
No real good news on the jobs front. Keep in mind that this is also happening at a time when many graduates are out looking for work for the first time. How fun can that be right now?
JON C. OGG