US Weekly Jobless Claims rises to highest level since Sept 2017

In the week ending January 26, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 253,000, an increase of 53,000 from the previous week’s revised level. This is the highest level for initial claims since September 30, 2017 when it was 254,000. The previous week’s level was revised up by 1,000 from 199,000 to 200,000. The 4-week moving average was 220,250, an increase of 5,000 from the previous week’s revised average. The previous week’s average was revised up by 250 from 215,000 to 215,250.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 1.2 percent for the week ending January 19, unchanged from the previous week’s unrevised rate. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending January 19 was 1,782,000, an increase of 69,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 1,713,000. This is the highest level for insured unemployment since April 28, 2018 when it was 1,794,000. The 4-week moving average was 1,737,750, an increase of 8,000 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 1,729,750. This is the highest level for this average since August 4, 2018 when it was 1,729,000.

The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 250,188 in the week ending January 26, a decrease of 19,569 (or -7.3 percent) from the previous week. The seasonal factors had expected a decrease of 71,347 (or -26.4 percent) from the previous week. There were 267,766 initial claims in the comparable week in 2018. The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 1.5 percent during the week ending January 19, unchanged from the prior week. The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 2,129,011, an increase of 38,555 (or 1.8 percent) from the preceding week. The seasonal factors had expected a decrease of 42,837 (or – 2.0 percent) from the previous week. A year earlier the rate was 1.7 percent and the volume was 2,376,238.

The total number of people claiming benefits in all programs for the week ending January 12 was 2,148,755, a decrease of 66,958 from the previous week. There were 2,321,688 persons claiming benefits in all programs in the comparable week in 2018. No state was triggered “on” the Extended Benefits program during the week ending January 12. Initial claims for UI benefits filed by former Federal civilian employees totaled 14,739 in the week ending January 19, a decrease of 10,680 from the prior week. There were 615 initial claims filed by newly discharged veterans, a decrease of 55 from the preceding week. There were 40,112 former Federal civilian employees claiming UI benefits for the week ending January 12, an increase of 15,431 from the previous week. Newly discharged veterans claiming benefits totaled 6,695, a decrease of 56 from the prior week.

The highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending January 12 were in Alaska (3.4), New Jersey (2.7), Connecticut (2.5), Rhode Island (2.5), Montana (2.4), Massachusetts (2.3), Pennsylvania (2.3), California (2.2), Illinois (2.2), Minnesota (2.1), and West Virginia (2.1).

The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending January 19 were in Ohio (+2,193), Kansas (+630), and Virgin Islands (+8), while the largest decreases were in Kentucky (-8,260), Pennsylvania (-7,942), Michigan (-6,454), Georgia (-5,743), and New York (-5,082).

 

Dept of Labor

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Ed Moya

Ed Moya

Senior Market Analyst at OANDA
With more than 20 years’ trading experience, Ed Moya is a market analyst with OANDA, producing up-to-the-minute fundamental analysis of geo-political events and monetary policies in the US, Europe, the Middle East and North Africa. Over the course of his career, he has worked with some of the world’s leading forex brokerages and research departments including Global Forex Trading, FX Solutions and Trading Advantage. Most recently he worked with TradeTheNews.com, where he provided market analysis on economic data and corporate news. Based in New York, Ed is a regular guest on several major financial television networks including BNN, CNBC, Fox Business, and Bloomberg. He is often quoted in leading print and online publications such as the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post. He holds a BA in Economics from Rutgers University. Follow Ed on Twitter @edjmoya ‏
Ed Moya