January 2, 2014

Initial Unemployment Claims (010214): 339K SA; Raw Claims 9.5% Below Same Week Last Year

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 6:47 am

Prediction at Bloomberg: 342,000 seasonally adjusted claims. Update: Business Insider has 338,000.

Seasonal adjustment factors:

  • Week ended Dec. 28, 2013 — 130.9
  • Week ended Dec. 29, 2012 — 131.8

Raw claims:

  • Week ended Dec. 21, 2013 — 417,638 (already revised)
  • Week ended Dec. 29, 2012 — 490,099

For Bloomberg’s prediction to come true, raw claims will need to be 448,000 or lower (448K divided by 1.309 is 342K, rounded).

That level of raw claims is about 10% below the same week last year, and getting at or below that level *should* be a breeze. If not, it will be cause for a bit of concern.

The report will be here at 8:30 a.m.

HERE IT IS (permanent link):

SEASONALLY ADJUSTED DATA

In the week ending December 28, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 339,000, a decrease of 2,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 341,000. The 4-week moving average was 357,250, an increase of 8,500 from the previous week’s revised average of 348,750.

… UNADJUSTED DATA

The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 443,513 in the week ending December 28, an increase of 25,875 from the previous week. There were 490,099 initial claims in the comparable week in 2012.

The revised 341K figure for last week is 3K above what was originally reported. Obviously, the four-week average moving over 350K is not good.

The next two weeks will be pretty important. Last year’s raw claims in the comparable two weeks were about 550K. With high seasonal adjustment factors, lower levels of raw claims *should* generate seasonally adjusted results at or below 320K. Will they? We’ll see.

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