Weekly Unemployment Claims: Down 39K, Beats Forecast

Unemployment Claims

The headline Unemployment Insurance data is seasonally adjusted. What does the non-seasonally adjusted data look like? See the chart below, which clearly shows the extreme volatility of the non-adjusted data (the red dots). The 4-week MA gives an indication of the recurring pattern of seasonal change (note, for example, those regular January spikes).

Because of the extreme volatility of the non-adjusted weekly data, we can add a 52-week moving average to give a better sense of the secular trends. The chart below also has a linear regression through the data.

Nonseasonally Adjusted 52-week MA

Here's a look at each year's claims going back to 2009.

For an analysis of unemployment claims as a percent of the labor force, see this regularly updated piece The Civilian Labor Force, Unemployment Claims, and the Business Cycle. Here is a snapshot from that analysis.

Initial Claims to the CLF

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