November 8, 2012

Initial Unemployment Claims (110812): 355K SA, Down 8K From Last Week; NSA 12% Below Last Year (Update: NY and NJ DC Missing)

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:50 am

From the Department of Labor:


In the week ending November 3, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 355,000, a decrease of 8,000 from the previous week’s unrevised figure of 363,000. The 4-week moving average was 370,500, an increase of 3,250 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 367,250.


The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 355,406 in the week ending November 3, an increase of 15,489 from the previous week. There were 402,532 initial claims in the comparable week in 2011.

For only the second time in the 87 weeks I’ve been tracking, the previous week’s claims number was not adjusted upward. There is still a chance that it will get moved up in the coming week or two, as this has happened several times during that period.

This year’s seasonal factor of 100.1 is well below the factor of 103.7 used during the same week last year. If last year’s factor had been used on this year’s raw claims number, seasonally adjusted claims would have come in 12,000 lower (355,406 divided by 1.037 rounds to 343,000).

On balance, it’s an improvement — with a long, long way to go to get to acceptability.


UPDATE: Zero Hedge plausibly claims that today’s claims number is suppressed because of Hurricane Sandy. We’ll know more about that next week. Also: Steveegg confirms this is the case for full states in the the first comment below.



  1. According to Reuters, New Jersey and DC did not turn in their jobless claims data due to Hurricane Sandy. That is approximately 10K-11K (unadjusted) initial claims, which neatly fills the gap between what was reported and what was expected.

    Comment by steveegg — November 8, 2012 @ 9:41 am

  2. Also, I’m sure there was a lot of folks what with Sandy and the snow who didn’t file claims because they were way too busy tending to weather issues.

    Comment by zf — November 8, 2012 @ 11:24 am

  3. Is it New Jersey and New York or Jersey and DC?

    Comment by zf — November 8, 2012 @ 3:58 pm

  4. Sorry, it’s NJ and DC.

    Comment by Tom — November 8, 2012 @ 5:46 pm

  5. #4, That’s okay, it’s been a long three days. I wanted to know because if it was NY the numbers being suppressed would have of course been much higher.

    Comment by zf — November 9, 2012 @ 8:12 am

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