Today's weekly Jobless Claims came in higher than expected, jumping 16,000 to 357,000, well above expectations for 340,000. Additionally, last week's numbers were revised higher by 5,000 to 341K. So within the last week, we find ourselves with 21,000 more people newly unemployed than we had previously thought.
Fortunately, the 4-week average shows a more moderate bounce with an increase of 'only' 2,250 to 343K with the trend still clearly down.
Continuing claims however dropped 27,000 to 3.073 million. And this indeed is a new low since the recovery began.
While this week's jobless numbers could have been better, when you take those into consideration with the number of new jobs created, you can clearly see that the jobs market is healing. Slowly, but healing nonetheless.
Futures remained on the plus side after these numbers were released this morning. And a slight upward revision to Q4 GDP from 0.1% to 0.4% won't hurt. Add in record corporate profits (from today's Corporate Profits report) of $1.774 trillion (annualized) which represents a 13.3% annual increase, and the trend of economic improvement becomes clear.
Weigh in -- are you seeing these improvements in your own life and business?
That can be measured through things like more money and opportunities, or more confidence in your economic outlook.
Or are these numbers disconnected from what you're seeing around you locally?
Hopefully improvement. But let us know either way.