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U.S. Initial Jobless Claims – Two Steps Forward, One Step Backward?

Economics / Unemployment Apr 27, 2012 - 01:53 AM GMT

By: Asha_Bangalore

Economics

In the past few weeks, news from the labor market is pointing to less robust hiring than previously thought. Initial jobless claims slipped 1,000 and stand at 388,000 during the week ended April 21, the highest level since November 2011. The four-week moving average has risen to 381,750 from 363,000 during the week ended March 31. Continuing claims, which lag initial jobless claims by one week, increased 3,000 to 3.315 million and have risen 44,000 in the last two weeks.


Have job losses increased in the midst of a nearly three year expansion or is it a temporary aberration? It is premature to draw solid conclusions, additional data will be essential to sort this out. However, in light of payrolls posting a 120,000 gain in March vs. a 245,000 average increase seen in the three months ended February, questions about the durability of hiring are legitimate.

Asha Bangalore — Senior Vice President and Economist

http://www.northerntrust.com

Asha Bangalore is Vice President and Economist at The Northern Trust Company, Chicago. Prior to joining the bank in 1994, she was Consultant to savings and loan institutions and commercial banks at Financial & Economic Strategies Corporation, Chicago.

Copyright © 2012 Asha Bangalore

The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of The Northern Trust Company. The Northern Trust Company does not warrant the accuracy or completeness of information contained herein, such information is subject to change and is not intended to influence your investment decisions.


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