Jobless Claims: Claims Inch Lower, Stubborn Over 750k

November 5, 2020
Bottom Line: Jobless claims barely moved lower last week, holding over 750k on a seasonally adjusted basis and still over 700k on an unadjusted basis. But there was a sharp increase in claims in Illinois, likely a one-off processing event that should come back down this week. Last week's non-seasonally adjusted tally was very close to the forecast from our Nowcasting model. This week's model, to be reported next Thursday, suggests claims should fall below 700k for the first time. Overall, claims are still heading in the right direction but proving stubborn around the current levels, and bear watching for signs that labor market improvement may be stalling. Jobless Claims FELL by 7k during the week ended October 31st to 751k, compared with market expectations for an increase to 735k.The 4-week average FELL by 4.0k to 787k and the 13-week average FELL by 33.8k to 874k. Continuing Claims FELL by 538k during the week ended October 24th to 7,285k, after the prior week was revised moderately lower from 13,385k to 7,823k.The 4-week average FELL by 827k to 8,245k. On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, Continuing Claims FELL by 538k to 6,952k during the week ended October 17th. The Insured Jobless Rate FELL by 0.3% to 5.0% during the week ended October 24th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.