Jobless Claims: Shutdown Impact Limited

January 3, 2019
Bottom Line: Claims rose more than expected in the last week of 2018. While the government shutdown may have impacted the tallies, there is no evidence of that in the data yet, but both California and Virginia estimated claims for the week. For now the 4-week average for claims is just below the 13-week average at 220k, suggesting a steady labor market. Expect more volatility in the coming weeks as the shutdown and normal seasonal volatility impact claims. Jobless Claims ROSE by 10k during the week ended December 29th, 231k, compared with market expectations for a decline to 220k.The 4-week average FELL by 0.5k to 219k and the 13 week average ROSE by 1.8k to 220k. Continuing Claims ROSE by 32k during the week ended December 22nd to 1,740k, after the prior week was revised slightly higher from 1,668k to 1,708k.The 4-week average ROSE by 26k to 1,704k. On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims ROSE by 24k to 1,789k during the week ended December 15th. The Insured Jobless Rate STAYED at 1.2% during the week ended December 22nd. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.