The U.S. Labor Department has released its weekly jobless claims report and it showed a gain to some 382,000 claims — that is headed the wrong way. The prior week was revised to 367,000 from a prior preliminary reading of 365,000 jobless claims, and that had been the lowest level in four weeks.
Bloomberg was calling for the weekly claims to come in at 370,000 and Down Jones was projecting the weekly claims to be about 370,000.
There are two other key readings to look at here. We saw that the four-week average, which aims at reducing the weekly swings, rose by 3,250 to 375,000. Another reading is the army of unemployed, measured by the continuing claims, with a one-week lag. That reading fell by 49,000 to 3.283 million claims.
After the really poor payrolls data and after a recent report showed that the number of job openings was on the decline, investors are looking for any data they can grab regarding the employment situation. After all, an election is coming in November. This is also some of the last economic data ahead of today’s FOMC announcement regarding interest rate policy and whether or not more quantitative easing measures will be announced.
JON C. OGG