Hurricane Florence and flooding in the Carolinas proved to have very limited impact on jobless claims. After rising only 13,000 in the prior week, initial claims fell back 8,000 in the September 29 week to 207,000 which is under Econoday's consensus range.
Initial claims in South Carolina did rise nearly 1,000 in the week to just under 4,800 but claims in North Carolina, which had spiked in the prior week, fell back nearly 5,000 in the latest week to just over 5,300. Nationally, the 4-week average over the hurricane period held nearly unchanged, ranging from 206,000 in the September 15 week and coming in at 207,000 in the latest week.
The 4-week average for continuing claims fell 13,000 in lagging data for the September 22 week to 1.665 million which is a 45-year low. The unemployment rate for insured workers is unchanged at only 1.2 percent.
Jobless claims remain very low and very favorable and are consistent with downward pressure for tomorrow's unemployment rate and for strength in payroll growth. No states were estimated in the week.
Initial jobless claims are expected to come in at 213,000 in the September 29 week with data out of hurricane-hit Carolinas still a wild card. Claims in the prior week rose only modestly, up 12,000 though both North and South Carolina showed sharp increases.