Jobless claims came in lower than expected this week, falling from 238K down to 236K and 9K below the consensus expectation for an increase to 245K.  Once again, after bouncing higher two weeks ago, jobless claims are moving back down to the lower end of their range and are within 10K of the multi-decade low of 227K.  This week’s print also marked the 114th straight week where claims have been below 300K.

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051117 Initial Claims SA

Looking at the four-week moving average, jobless claims ticked up slightly, rising from 243K up to 243.5K.  Despite the slight increase, the four-week moving average is still within 4K of its multi-decade low.

051117 Initial Claims SA 4WK

On a non-seasonally adjusted basis, claims ticked up slightly rising from 211.3K up to 215K.  For the current week of the year, that’s the lowest reading since 1973 and more than 115K below the average for the current week of the year dating back to 2000.  No matter what metric you use, jobless claims were positive this week.

051117 Cont Claims NSA

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