Initial Claims

June 23rd, 2016 10:40 am | by John Jansen |

Via Stephen Stanley at Amherst Pierpont Securities:

Initial unemployment claims sank by more than expected in the week ended June 18, sliding 18,000 to 259,000.  It looks like there was a little week-to-week noise over the past two readings, and the state-by-state data suggest that it occurred in California (which accounts for by far the most claims of any state).  The average over the past two weeks is 268K, the average over the past four weeks is 267K, and the year-to-date average is 269K.  That, folks, is the definition of stability.  While Chair Yellen and the FOMC were clearly spooked by the May employment report, there has not been very much corroborating evidence of a shift in labor demand.  Rather, to the extent that job growth is slowing, it is most likely because the supply of available and qualified workers has dwindled.  I look for a bounceback to a decent payroll gain in June, though a June advance that is merely solid may not be enough to satisfy the Fed Chair, who sees scary monsters around every corner and requires much less evidence to raise goosebumps than she does to make them go away.

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