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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Jobless Claims Decline for Seven Straight Weeks

Data release Thursday shows seven straight weeks of decline in the four-week moving average of initial claims for unemployment. The moving average is widely seen as the best gauge of underlying initial claims trending.

Additionally, the number of people collecting long-term unemployment benefits in the week ended October 10 dropped to the lowest since March. This measure has also trended lower for five straight weeks.

These two are clear signs that unemployment is close to peaking and that the October employment report will likely show improvement over Septembers report.

The insured unemployment rate, which measures the percentage of the insured labor force that is jobless, also edged down to 4.5 percent in the week ended October 10 from 4.6 percent the prior week.

Another hopeful sign was that the number of mass layoffs, defined as job cuts involving at least 50 people from a single employer, fell by 129 to 2,561 last month.


  1. GNE, how's does this economic cycle compare with other cycles in terms of unemployment? Many are saying that this is a jobless recovery and as such this will cause this recovery to be much slower than normal.

  2. Anonymous,

    This cycle has characteristics that are very similar in terms of unemployment. It is way too soon for anyone to pronounce that this recovery will be jobless. Recovery has only just begun after a deep recession. As stimulus funds and programs begin to drive demand and provided the Fed continues its very accommodative stance on interest rate, job creation is just around the corner. If the chart shown above continues on its current slope, job creation will follow shortly.



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