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Economy in Brief

Initial Jobless Insurance Claims Back Down
by Tom Moeller February 1, 2007

A 20,000 drop in initial unemployment insurance claims last week to 307.000 reversed half of the upwardly revised increase the prior week. Consensus expectations had been for 315,000 claims.

During the last ten years there has been a (negative) 77% correlation between the level of initial claims and the m/m change in nonfarm payroll employment.

The four-week moving average of initial claims fell to 304,750 (6.6% y/y).

Continuing claims for unemployment insurance jumped 71,000 (1.1% y/y).

The insured rate of unemployment remained at 1.9%, about where it's been since February.

Unemployment Insurance (000s) 01/27/07 01/20/07 Y/Y 2006 2005 2004
Initial Claims 307 327 8.1% 313 332 343
 Continuing Claims -- 2,484 -3.2% 2,459 2,662 2,924
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