US Jobless Claims on the Rise Again Amid Continued Labour Market Weakening

As coronavirus cases continue to soar across the US prompting many states to reimpose restrictions, America’s labour market still does not appear to show any substantial improvements despite being nine months into the pandemic.

According to the latest data released by the Department of Labour, initial jobless claims for the week ending on December 5 totalled 853,000, which is a modest increase from the 716,000 that was revised from the prior week. Although economists surveyed by Dow Jones had anticipated claims to only reach 730,000, the Thanksgiving holiday lag was partly to blame for the previous week’s low numbers in comparison.

However, the latest weekly total is the highest since September 19, and suggests that the US labour market still has a very long road ahead before a strong recovery is underway, even amidst positive vaccine news. In fact, continuing claims spiked by 230,000 to a total of 5.76 million – the first such increase since August.

In the meantime, claims under the PUA program, which provides 39 weeks worth of unemployment benefits to those that would normally not qualify for regular state insurance programs, dropped by 313,739 to 8.6 million for the week ending on November 21. Then, emergency claims for those workers who maxed out their eligibility duration dropped by 36,140 to 614,517, thus pushing the total number of individuals collecting benefits under all programs down by 1.12 million to 19 million.

Information for this briefing was found via the DOL. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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