Haver Analytics
Haver Analytics
| Jan 18 2024

U.S. Jobless Claims Fall in Latest Week to Lowest Since Autumn 2022

  • January 13 week’s initial claims down 16,000.
  • Continuing claims down 26,000 in January 6 week.
  • Insured unemployment rate steady at 1.2%.

Initial claims for unemployment insurance fell in the week ended January 13 to 187,000 seasonally adjusted from 203,000 the prior week; that earlier amount was revised slightly from 202,000 initially reported. The latest week’s amount is the lowest since 182,000 in the week of September 24, 2022. The Action Economics Forecast Survey had expected the January 13 amount to have ticked up to 205,000. In the latest week, the four-week moving average of initial claims was 203,250, down from 208,000 in the prior week.

The amount of insured unemployment – also known as continuing claims or continued weeks claimed – was 1.806 million, seasonally adjusted, in the week ended January 6, down from 1.832 million the week before. The earlier week’s amount was revised from 1.834 million.

In the January 6 week, the insured unemployment rate was unchanged at 1.2%. That rate is the number of continuing claims as a percentage of covered employment, which was 149.9 million.

Insured unemployment rates vary widely by states and territories. In the December 30 week, the highest rates were in New Jersey (2.82%), Rhode Island (2.76%), Minnesota (2.60%), Montana (2.55%), and Massachusetts (2.32%). The lowest rates were in Kentucky (0.26%), Virginia (0.35%), Florida (0.38%), North Carolina (0.42%) and the Virgin Islands (0.44%). Other major states’ rates include Texas and Ohio (each 1.13%), Illinois and Connecticut (each 1.98%), New York (2.10%), Pennsylvania (2.18%) and California (2.26%). These state rates are not seasonally adjusted.

Data on weekly unemployment claims are from the Department of Labor itself, not the Bureau of Labor Statistics. They go back to 1967 and are contained in Haver’s WEEKLY database and are summarized monthly in USECON. Data for individual states are in REGIONW back to December 1986. The expectations figure is from the Action Economics Forecast Survey, in the AS1REPNA database.

  • Carol Stone, CBE came to Haver Analytics in 2003 following more than 35 years as a financial market economist at major Wall Street financial institutions, most especially Merrill Lynch and Nomura Securities. She has broad experience in analysis and forecasting of flow-of-funds accounts, the federal budget and Federal Reserve operations. At Nomura Securites, among other duties, she developed various indicator forecasting tools and edited a daily global publication produced in London and New York for readers in Tokyo.   At Haver Analytics, Carol is a member of the Research Department, aiding database managers with research and documentation efforts, as well as posting commentary on select economic reports. In addition, she conducts Ways-of-the-World, a blog on economic issues for an Episcopal-Church-affiliated website, The Geranium Farm.   During her career, Carol served as an officer of the Money Marketeers and the Downtown Economists Club. She has a PhD from NYU's Stern School of Business. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, and has a weekend home on Long Island.

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