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Jobless Claims: Modest Rebound

February 17, 2022
Bottom Line: Claims jumped last week after falling for three straight weeks. Most of the increase was due to the seasonal adjustment model and doesn't suggest a major shift in the trend. A few states (Kentucky, Missouri and Ohio) reported unusual jumps in claims that also suggested this report was more of an anomaly than a change in the trend. While the recent level of claims and the 4-week average remains above the 13-week average, claims are likely finding a new equilibrium rather than suggesting a shift in labor market trends.
Our Nowcast index predicted a modest increase last week and now suggests another decline with claims heading back towards 200k this week.
Initial Jobless Claims
ROSE 23k in the week ended February 12th to 248k, ABOVE the 4-week average of 243.25k, ABOVE the 13-week average of 224.69231k but 599k BELOW the year-ago level. Claims for the 5th of Feb were revised up from +223k to +225k. Non-seasonally adjusted Claims ROSE 7.742k.
Continuing Claims FELL 26k in the week ended February 5th to 1.593M, BELOW the 4-week average of 1.62625M, BELOW the 13-week average of 1.760462M and 2.999M BELOW the year-ago level. Continuing Claims for the 29th of Jan were revised down from +1.621M to +1.619M.
The Insured Jobless Rate was down to 1.2% in the week ended February 5th. The insured jobless rate only reflects the number of people collecting regular state unemployment insurance.
Article by Contingent Macro Advisors