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Jobless Claims: Huge Jump Due To Harvey

September 7, 2017
Bottom Line: Claims jumped in the week ended September 2nd, almost entirely driven by a 52k jump in Texas due to Hurricane Harvey. There was also a jump in claims in Michigan, likely also temporary due to auto plant retooling. Expect substantial volatility in claims , mostly transitory, over the coming months due to Hurricane Harvey, and likely Hurricane Irma in Florida and the East Coast . The trend in labor markets remain solid , despite this temporary volatility.

Jobless Claims ROSE by 62k during the week ended September 2nd, 298k, compared with market expectations for an increase to 238k. The 4-week average ROSE by 13.5k to 250k and the 13 week average ROSE by 4.1k to 245k.

Continuing Claims FELL by 5k during the week ended August 26th to 1,940k, after the prior week was revised slightly lower from 1,954k to 1,945k.The 4-week average FELL by 4k to 1,948k.

On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims FELL by 39k to 1,802k during the week ended August 19th. The Insured Jobless Rate STAYED at 1.4% during the week ended August 26th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.