Weekly Jobless Claims May Seem Dull, but Still Extremely Low

The U.S. Labor Department is out with its latest read on weekly jobless claims. This likely was not fully available to the Federal Reserve for its announcement yesterday, and with the markets at new highs, these are going to be followed closely.

Last week’s claims figure came in up by 2,000 to 336,000. Bloomberg had a consensus estimate of 340,000 and a range of 325,000 to 352,000. Last week’s preliminary report of 332,000 was revised to 334,000.

As far as what is happening here, we recently saw a larger-than-expected nonfarm payrolls and private sector payrolls report. We are also one week past what was previously reported as the second lowest number of jobless claims since the recession started.

Another measurement comes from the continuing jobless claims, reported with a one-week lag. This is what we call the army of unemployed, and the number came in 3.05 million. Last week was the closest it was to being less than 3 million that we have seen since the recovery started.

We were hoping for better news today, but investors should not take today’s numbers as bad news. The reality is that on is own this data should have very little impact on the futures this morning. DJIA futures remain up about 12 points and S&P futures are up about 0.25 points.

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