September 12, 2013

Initial Unemployment Claims (091213): Garbage (See ‘NOTE’ and ‘UPDATE’)

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 7:03 am


Seasonal Adjustment Factors:

  • Week ended Sept. 8, 2012 — 78.6
  • Week ended Sept. 7, 2013 — 78.1

Raw (i.e., not seasonally adjusted) Claims:

  • Week ended Sept. 8, 2012 — 299,729
  • Week ended Aug. 31, 2013 — 268,843 (before revision)

For seasonally adjusted claims to come in at 330,000 or lower,  raw claims will need to be 258,000 or less (258K divided by .781 is 330K, rounded).

I think raw claims will come at about the same level as last week, and that the resulting seasonally adjusted reading will be in the low 340s.

We’ll see here at 8:30 a.m.

HERE IT IS (permanent link), delayed by a shaky network connection. So much for my theory, but the drop is so low that it seems not credible –


In the week ending September 7, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 292,000, a decrease of 31,000 from the previous week’s unrevised figure of 323,000. The 4-week moving average was 321,250, a decrease of 7,500 from the previous week’s revised average of 328,750.


The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 228,399 in the week ending September 7, a decrease of 40,250 from the previous week. There were 299,729 initial claims in the comparable week in 2012.

NOTE: Steve in the comments is citing “faulty reporting by states. So the number really is not credible.


UPDATE: Zero Hedge: “Initial Jobless Claims Plunge Due To ‘Computer Upgrades” And “Faulty Reporting By States’” –

Specifically, a larger state and a smaller one that retooled their computer networks still provided the Labor Department with applications counts. Furthermore, the BLS also said that the decrease in filings probably didn’t signal a change in labor-market conditions. In other words, the number is garbage, and the BLS knows the reporting is faulty, but let’s go ahead and report it anyway.

Next we await for the unemployment rate to hit -100% as the BLS upgrades from Windows 3.11 to Vista.

Lord have mercy. I’ll revisit this report next week when they hopefully have things together — or sooner if something credible arises.



  1. And there’s the collapse of the markets on the 31K drop in initial jobless claims.

    Comment by steveegg — September 12, 2013 @ 8:31 am

  2. Whoops! Chryon on CNBC – “Labor official: Drom in claims due laregly to faulty reporting by states.”

    Comment by steveegg — September 12, 2013 @ 8:34 am

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