2018 Economic Calendar
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Jobless Claims  
Released On 1/25/2018 8:30:00 AM For wk1/20, 2018
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
New Claims - Level220 K216 K240 K225 K to 245 K233 K
4-week Moving Average - Level244.50 K243.50 K240.00 K
New Claims - Change-41 K-45 K17 K

Initial jobless claims rose in the January 20 week but remain low and favorable, at 233,000 which is lower than expected with the prior week revised down 4,000 to 216,000 for a new 45-year low. The 4-week average is down 3,500 to a 240,000 level that is roughly in line with the month-ago trend.

Continuing claims in lagging data for the January 13 week fell 28,000 to 1.937 million with this 4-week average down slightly to 1.920 million and also in line with the month-ago trend. The unemployment rate for insured workers is unchanged at 1.4 percent.

Unlike the prior week when there was a rash of estimates, only one state was estimated in the current week. Today's report points squarely at another very healthy employment report coming up a week from Friday.

Consensus Outlook
The steep 41,000 drop in initial claims during the January 13 week to 220,000, which was perhaps skewed lower by an unusual number of state estimates, is expected to be reversed in part during the January 20 week where the consensus is 240,000.

New unemployment claims are compiled weekly to show the number of individuals who filed for unemployment insurance for the first time. An increasing (decreasing) trend suggests a deteriorating (improving) labor market. The four-week moving average of new claims smooths out weekly volatility.  Why Investors Care
Weekly series fluctuate more dramatically than monthly series even when the series are adjusted for seasonal variation. The 4-week moving average gives a better perspective on the underlying trend.
Data Source: Haver Analytics

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