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Jobless Claims: Fall back to July lows

September 22, 2016
Bottom Line: Initial claims declined modestly and are at their lowest level since mid-July. The 4-week average is at 259k, below the 13-week average that is now 260k, indicating the labor market trends are still improving modestly. These data are for the survey week for the September Employment Situation report - -the weekly figure and the 4-week average is slightly lower than in August, suggesting a pace of payroll growth a touch higher than August (+151k Non-Farm payrolls). And while inline with the July claims data, this data wouldn't support a number as strong as July's payroll growth (+275k) as some of those gains were due to unusually low gains in April and May. Early estimates are for +173k on non-farm payrolls for September.

Jobless Claims FELL by 8k during the week ended September 17th to 252k, compared with market expectations for an increase to 265k. The 4-week average FELL by 2k to 259k and the 13 week average FELL to 260k. Initial claims have been on a declining trend over the past 6 years but the pace of decline has now slowed.

Continuing Claims FELL by 36k during the week ended September 10th to 2,113k, after the prior week was revised slightly lower from 2,159k to 2,149k. The 4-week average FELL by 8k to 2,140k. continuing claims have also been on a declining trend for more than 6 years.

On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims FELL by 27k to 1,841k during the week ended September 3rd.

The Insured Jobless Rate FELL by 0.1% to 1.5% during the week ended September 10th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.