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Economy in Brief

U.S. Initial Claims for Unemployment Insurance Reach Five-Month High
by Tom Moeller  July 9, 2015

Initial unemployment insurance claims increased to 297,000 (-5.9% y/y) during the week ended July 4 from 282,000 during the prior week, revised from 281,000. The four week moving average rose to 279,500, the highest level since early-May. The Action Economics Forecast Survey expected 275,000 initial claims. During the last ten years, there has been a 76% correlation between the level of initial claims and the m/m change in nonfarm payrolls.

Continuing claims for unemployment insurance rose to 2.334 million (-10.5% y/y) in the latest week, the highest level since March. The four-week moving average increased to 2.268 million.

The insured rate of unemployment held at 1.7%.

By state, the insured rate of unemployment continued to vary greatly with South Dakota (0.29%), Indiana (0.77%), Virginia (0.82%), South Carolina (0.85%), Florida (0.85%) and Tennessee (1.05%) at the low end of the range. At the high end were Massachusetts (1.91%), Illinois (1.95%), Connecticut (2.24%), California (2.31%), Pennsylvania (2.33%) and New Jersey (2.44%). These data are not seasonally adjusted.

Data on weekly unemployment insurance are contained in Haver's WEEKLY database and they are summarized monthly in USECON. Data for individual states are in REGIONW. The expectations figure is from the Action Economics survey, carried in the AS1REPNA database.

The Recovery's Final Frontier? is the title of yesterday's speech by John C. Williams, President & CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and it can be found here.

Unemployment Insurance (000s) 07/04/15 06/27/15 06/20/15 Y/Y % 2014 2013 2012
Initial Claims 297 282 271 -5.9 309 343 374
Continuing Claims -- 2,334 2,265 -10.5 2,599 2,978 3,319
Insured Unemployment Rate (%) -- 1.7 1.7 2.0
2.0 2.3 2.6
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