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Economy in Brief

Initial Claims for Jobless Insurance Bounce Back
by Tom Moeller April 28, 2005

Initial unemployment insurance claims last week recovered 21,000 of the lessened 33,000 decline the prior period. The level of 320,000 equaled Consensus expectations.

During the last ten years there has been a (negative) 75% correlation between the level of initial claims for unemployment insurance and the monthly change in payroll employment. There has been a (negative) 65% correlation with the level of continuing claims.

The four week moving average of initial claims fell sharply to 323,000 (-7.2% y/y).

Continuing claims for unemployment insurance dropped a sharp 76,000 to the lowest level since March of 2001.

The insured unemployment rate slipped to 2.0%.

Unemployment Insurance (000s) 04/23/05 04/16/05 Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Initial Claims 320 299 -5.9% 343 402 404
Continuing Claims -- 2,555 -15.1% 2,926 3,531 3,570
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