Jobless Claims: Downtrend Resumes

February 1, 2018
Bottom Line: After volatility and revisions due to the weather in mid-January, claims are continuing to return to trend levels. The 4-week average is at 235k, back below the 13-week average that is now 239k, indicating the labor market trends are improving modestly. Seasonal factors and adjustments have dissipated, as has state-level volatility due to regional weather disruptions, revealing a solid underlying trend. Jobless Claims FELL by 1k during the week ended January 27th, 230k, compared with market expectations for an increase to 235k.The 4-week average FELL by 5.0k to 235k and the 13 week average ROSE by 0.1k to 239k. Continuing Claims ROSE by 13k during the week ended January 20th to 1,953k, after the prior week was revised slightly lower from 1,952k to 1,940k.The 4-week average ROSE by 12k to 1,933k. On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims ROSE by 86k to 2,373k during the week ended January 13th. The Insured Jobless Rate STAYED at 1.4% during the week ended January 20th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.