The Best Thing About Today's Great Jobless Claims Report

Photo: Flickr via topastrodfogna

Earlier, we learned that initial jobless claims unexpectedly fell to 332k from 342k a week ago.This brought the 4-week average down to a 5-year low.

This is particularly impressive because it comes during the first full week of the sequestration budget cuts.

Recently, the jobless claims report has been the target of criticism because of numbers from big states that often get estimated.  So you can bet the sceptics double-checked the report.

However, today’s number was clean.

Here’s TD Securities’ Gennadiy Goldberg:

Initial claims data sharply surprised expectations, unexpectedly falling 10K to 332K and coming within 2K of the cycle low seen in mid-January. With the labour Department citing no special factors for the decline, we are forced to take the initial claims print at face value as the 4wk MA falls to another fresh cycle low of 347K. It is worth noting that despite anecdotal evidence of government layoffs due to sequestration, initial claims have continued to come in lower, providing further evidence of improving labour market fundamentals. Seasonal adjustment factors were actually unsupportive for claims this week, so their outperformance here could be seen as evidence that the layoff side of the equation continues to improve quite notably.

This continues the theme the the U.S. economy is indeed picking up in a big way.  And the best part is that jobs are coming back too.

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