The Annual Seasonal Noise Continues, Initial Jobless Claims 364,000

Posted on December 22, 2011

The Department of Labor reported that in the week ending December 17th , the advance figure for weekly jobless claims was 364,000, a decrease of 4,000 from the previous weeks revised figure of 368,000. The 4-week moving average is now 380,250, a decrease of 8,000 from the previous week’s revised average of 388,250. Last week I wrote that revisions are usually to the upside and sure enough, the DOL revised last weeks number higher, albeit by a measly 2,000 claims.

This number will be noisy & mostly unreliable until around the middle of January. When it’s released on January 7th, I expect the employment report to show strong payroll & household employment growth in December. 

If you’re interested in learning about the strengths and weaknesses of payroll and household surveys check out my article published at Seeking Alpha called, “Household Vs. Payroll, Which Survey Is Most Exact Employment Measure?” 

US: Initial Jobless Claims
Initial Claims 366,000 368,000 364,000
Continuing Claims 3,603,000 3,625,000 3,546,000