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Jobless Claims: Slight Decline Amid Seasonal Adjustments

December 31, 2020
Bottom Line: Claims fell last week but remained volatile as the number of claims in each state was skewed by office hours amid the Christmas holiday.   Claims in Illinois, Florida, and Pennsylvania fell, for instance, while New York and California saw higher claims.   Expect two more weeks of difficult seasonal adjustments.  The trend, though, remains concerning with the 4-week average over the 13-week average.
Our Nowcasting model suggests claims are running higher than reported, down a touch but still in the high 800s to mid-900s.
Jobless Claims FELL by 19k during the week ended December 26th to 787k, compared with market expectations for an increase to 835k. The 4-week average ROSE by 17.8k to 837k and the 13 week average FELL by 4.8k to 787k.   
Continuing Claims FELL by 103k during the week ended December 19th to 5,219k, after the prior week was revised moderately lower from 13,385k to 5,322k.The 4-week average FELL by 77k to 5,457k.         
On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims FELL by 171k to 5,258k during the week ended December 12nd.             
The Insured Jobless Rate
STAYED at 3.6% during the week ended December 19th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.
Article by Contingent Macro