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Tag Archives: Unemployment

Initial jobless claims confirm benign employment conditions

Initial jobless claims confirm benign employment conditions  – by New Deal democrat Initial claims declined -14,000 to 209,000 last week, and the four week moving average declined -750 to 220,000. With the usual one week lag, continuing claims declined -22,000 to 1.840 million: On a YoY basis, both weekly claims and their four week average were up only 4.6%. Continuing claims, which have been much more elevated YoY, were up 24.0%:...

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“No new economic data, so let me follow up some more on the issue of longer-term unemployment”

Consumption leads (longer term) unemployment, too  – by New Deal democrat Once again there is no new economic data, so let me follow up some more on the issue of longer term unemployment. Earlier this week I pointed out that just as initial claims lead continuing claims, so does short term unemployment (under 5 weeks) lead long term unemployment (15 weeks and over). Think of unemployment as a pipeline, and the intake flows before the main...

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Scenes from the August employment report – and a warning

Scenes from the August employment report – and a warning  – by New Deal democrat The weekly lull after last Friday’s employment report will end tomorrow. In the meantime, let’s take a deeper dive into a few important trends in that report. First, the unemployment rate rose 0.3% to 3.8% – which is totally not surprising at all. As I wrote last Thursday, initial jobless claims have a nearly flawless 60+ year record for forecasting the trend...

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How tight is the labor market?

Inflation is coming down, as the last BLS report shows. I'm not going to get into that into this (very short) post. The disinflation has taken place while the official unemployment remains very low. However, we all know that unemployment measures very poorly the situation in the labor market. My alternative measure, which I make students calculate in macro classes, is what would be the unemployment rate be if the participation rate, which has been declining since the early 2000s (when China...

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New and improved initial claims! Now including comparison to Sahm Rule

New and improved initial claims! Now including comparison to Sahm Rule  – by New Deal democrat I’m making an important addition to my weekly blurb on jobless claims this week: I’m showing how it compares with and leads the Sahm Rule. Just in case you’re not familiar with the Sahm Rule, it is a rule of thumb started by economist Claudia Sahm, stating that the economy is in a recession when the 3 month average of the unemployment rate rises...

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March employment report 2: unemployment recession indicators

Scenes from the March employment report 2: unemployment recession indicators  – by New Deal democrat A reminder: I may be offline for the next couple of days. In the meantime, yesterday I looked at the 5 leading indicators contained in the employment report, and summarized how they either signal recession now or within the next 3 to 6 months. Today I want to focus on unemployment and underemployment. Economist Gloria Sahm’s Rule, namely...

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Scenes from the March employment report 1: Leading sector indicators

Scenes from the March employment report 1: leading sector indicators  – by New Deal democrat There’s no significant economic news this week until Wednesday’s CPI report, and as a side note, I might be offline for a day or two later this week. In the meantime, today and tomorrow let’s take a look at some of the important information from last Friday’s employment report. Today, I’m taking a look at the leading employment sectors and several...

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Jobless claims: steady as she goes

 Jobless claims: steady as she goes by New Deal democrat [ Special programming note: yesterday’s Fed action, and more important the statements made afterward, merit special attention. I will put up a special post on that later today.] Initial jobless claims remained at their recent low level, down -1,000 from one week ago to 217,000. The 4 week average declined -500 to 218,750. Continuing claims, which lag slightly, rose 47,500 to a 7 month...

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August JOLTS report: the game of reverse musical chairs in the jobs market is ending

August JOLTS report: the game of reverse musical chairs in the jobs market is ending  – by New Deal democrat Since early this year I’ve been making the point that, because of the pandemic, there have been several million fewer persons looking for work, leaving a huge number of unfilled job vacancies, particularly in the face of a roughly 10% higher jump in demand. This has given employees the upper hand, as there are almost always higher...

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Resurrecting the metric: initial claims lead the unemployment rate

Resurrecting the metric: initial claims lead the unemployment rate; no recession signal so far  Initial jobless claims declined -2,000 to 229,000 last week, vs. the 50+ year low of 166,000 set in March. The 4 week average rose from 4,500 to 223,500, compared with the all-time low of 170,500 eleven weeks ago.  Continuing claims rose 5,000 to 1,315,000, which is 9,000 above their 50 year low of 3 weeks ago: Initial claims have been in an uptrend...

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