Job Market in U.S. Continues to Show Signs of Improvement
For the third time in four weeks, fewer participants in the labor forced filed first-time unemployment claims, according to a report released this morning from the Labor Department. In the period ending March 12, applications for jobless benefits fell by 16,000 to 385,000, in line with the median forecast according to a Bloomberg News survey. Increased hiring efforts by small businesses are helping make progress in the market. That, coupled with fewer firings and a lower unemployment rate should help the economy grow in the long-run, given more disposable income will become available, and consumption represents approximately 70 percent of the overall headline growth figure.
U.S. Continuing Jobless Claims: March 2010 to Present
Similarly, the four-week average of jobless claims fell to its lowest level since July 2008, indicating progress in the labor market. The four-week moving average, widely considered a less volatile measure, declined to 386,250 from 393,250. Overall, Economists projected 388,000 claims last week after a previously reported 397,000, according to the median estimate in the Bloomberg survey. Projections ranged from 375,000 to 400,000. The labor market continues to remain depressed, with the unemployment rate at 8.9 percent, according to the most recent reading in February. It was the lowest rate since April 2009 and represented the third straight monthly decline.
Written by Christopher Vecchio, DailyFX Research.
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