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Jobless Claims: Trend Resumes

March 15, 2018
Bottom Line: Claims resumed the downtrend after a weather-related blip in late Feb/early March. The 4-week average is at 222k, still below the 13-week average that is now 232k, indicating the labor market trends are improving. Expect another round of weather-related volatility in the coming weeks' reports, but overall there is little to suggest anything has changed in the steadily improving labor market trend.

Jobless Claims ROSE by 21k during the week ended March 3rd, 231k, compared with market expectations for an increase to 220k. The 4-week average ROSE by 2.0k to 223k and the 13 week average FELL by 0.4k to 232k.

Continuing Claims FELL by 64k during the week ended February 24th to 1,870k, after the prior week was revised slightly higher from 1,875k to 1,934k.The 4-week average FELL by 14k to 1,907k.

On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims FELL by 32k to 2,227k during the week ended February 17th.

The Insured Jobless Rate FELL by 0.1% to 1.3% during the week ended February 24th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.