Initial Jobless Claims Increase 1.5%

Initial jobless claims increased 1.5% to 333,000 for the week ending Aug. 3, according to a Labor Department report released today.

After falling a revised 4.9% the previous week, to what was initially a five-year low, this newest report managed to clock in under analysts' expectations of 336,000 claims.

Source: Author, data from Labor Department 

From a more long-term perspective, a 1.8% drop in the four-week moving average to 335,500 initial claims marks the fourth straight week of declining claims, taking that metric to its lowest level since November 2007, the month before the Great Recession began. Both the latest week's claims and the four-week average fall significantly below 400,000, a cutoff point that economists consider a sign of an improving labor market.

On a state-by-state basis, 12 states recorded a decrease of more than 1,000 initial claims for the week ending July 27 (most recent available data). California's claims dropped a whopping 21,480 due primarily to fewer services layoffs, while fewer wholesale trade layoffs helped push Michigan's numbers down 8,650. Throughout the states, fewer layoffs in the manufacturing sector proved to be a common theme which, according to The Wall Street Journal, originates from the completion of car factory retooling for the year. Not a single state registered an increase of more than 1,000 initial claims.

The unemployment rate fell to a 4½-year low of 7.4% in July, down from 7.6% in June. That is still well above the 5% to 6% associated with a normal economy.

More than 4.5 million people received unemployment aid in the week ending July 20, the latest data available. That's down 174,418 from the previous week. The number of recipients has fallen 21% in the past year.

-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.


Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (1)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2586681, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 9/26/2016 3:19:09 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 2 days ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,261.45 -131.01 -0.71%
S&P 500 2,164.69 -12.49 -0.57%
NASD 5,305.75 -33.78 -0.63%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes