US Jobless Claims Rose Last Week

The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits last week increased to the highest level since early September, but the underlying trend continued to point to a strengthening labor market.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits rose by 19,000 to a seasonally adjusted 316,000 for the week ended Jan.

10, the Labor Department said on Thursday.

 
Economists polled by Reuters had forecast claims falling to 291,000 last week. The prior week’s data was revised to show 3,000 more claims received than previously reported.

The four-week moving average of claims, considered a better measure of labor market trends as it irons out week-to-week volatility, rose by only 6,750 to 298,000 last week.

It has remained below 300,000, which is associated with a firming labor market, for 18 weeks. Last week’s unexpected increase in claims likely does not indicate a material shift in the jobs picture.

Employment gains have exceeded 200,000 in each of the last 11 months, the longest stretch since 1994.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza