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Economy in Brief

Hurricanes Lifted Initial Jobless Insurance Claims
by Tom Moeller October 6, 2005

Initial filings for unemployment insurance outpaced Consensus expectations for 365,000 claims and rose 21,000 to 390,000 last week. The prior week's decline was lessened to 66,000.

The Labor Department indicated that last week 74,000 initial claims were linked to Hurricanes Katrina & Rita and totaled 363,000 during September.

The four-week moving average of initial claims rose to 404,500 (17.2% y/y) from 388,750 during the prior four weeks.

Continuing claims for unemployment insurance surged 118,000 following a downwardly revised 129,000 increase during the prior week.

The insured rate of unemployment rose to 2.3% from 2.2% the week prior. The low in early September was 2.0%.

Hurricane Katrina and the Employment Situation report for September 2005 from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics can be found here.

Unemployment Insurance (000s) 09/31/05 09/24/05 Y/Y 2004 2003 2002
Initial Claims 390 369 14.4% 343 402 404
   Hurricane Related Claims (000, NSA) 74 70
Continuing Claims -- 2,905 2.1% 2,926 3,531 3,570
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