Thursday, October 14, 2010

Why is a Rise in Jobless Claims Always “Unexpected?”

At least it always seems to be. (Is anyone really surprised that things aren't getting better?) U.S. Trade Gap Grows, Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Rise - Bloomberg
The number of Americans filing claims for jobless benefits unexpectedly climbed by 13,000 to 462,000 last week, according to the Labor Department.
Of course what Bloomberg doesn't emphasize is that last weeks numbers were revised up to 449,000 new claims. See Instant view: Jobless claims, producer prices, trade | Reuters.

And the number that really means something is the 4-week moving average anyway, and it is going up as well.
The four-week average of first-time jobless benefits, which economists prefer because it smoothes out weekly fluctuations, rose 2,250 to 459,000.
So you think the economy is getting better. Guess we will see.

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