Initial Unemployment Claims Continue Downward: Week Ending March 27

The update on unemployment figures continue to look good in spite of lay-offs. For the week ending March 27, the figure for adjusted initial claims was 439,000, a decrease of 6,000 from the previous week’s figure. The 4-week moving average was 447,250, a decrease of 6,750 from the previous week’s revised average of 454,000.I thought some of you might be interested in the largest increases and decreases on a state-by-state basis.  The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending March 20 were in Illinois (+1,396), Oklahoma (+1,152), Missouri (+792), South Carolina (+395), and New Mexico (+303), while the largest decreases were in California (-5,180), Pennsylvania (-3,677), North Carolina (-2,733), New Jersey (-2,521), and Michigan (-1,644). My home state of Michigan needs all the help it can get.Here, again, is Mark Zandi’s interpretation of the claims stats.Only when claims head down to 400,000 will the economy be creating enough jobs to maintain stable unemployment.  Closer to 350,000 will lower the unemployment rate and mean that the recovery is evolving into an expansion.  When we get to initial weekly unemployment claims of 300,000, boom times are back.
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