Jobless claims came in higher than expected this week hitting a level of 265K compared to expectations for 256K. That’s the highest weekly reading since the first week of August. Additionally, after nine straight weeks where jobless claims came in lower than expected, this week’s higher than expected reading represents the third straight miss. Even after this week’s increase, jobless claims are still at extraordinarily low levels and have yet to even make a higher high, but when claims eventually do start rising, it will have to start from somewhere. Whether or not it is from these levels remains to be seen.
With this week’s increase, the four-week moving average increased to 257.75K from 253K. This is 8.25K above the post-recession low of 249.5K hit earlier this month.
On a non-seasonally adjusted (NSA) basis, claims increased by just under 9K to 245.3K. Despite the increase, this level is more than 100K below the historical average for this current week of the year going back to 2000. In fact, you still have to go back to 1973 to find a year where claims for the current week of the year were lower than they are now.