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IFR-Preview-major US economic data for Oct 4

WASHINGTON, Oct 3 (IFR) -

WHAT: Labor Department Initial Jobless Claims, weekly

WHEN: Thursday 0830 EDT (1230 GMT)

FORECASTS Reuters IFR Previous Initial claims 370,000 365,000 359,000

Continued claims (mln) 3.271 3.280 3.271

IFR COMMENTARY: "Initial unemployment insurance claims were volatile around and after the Labor Day holiday, but we look for them to settle in now at around 365k. That would still be an improvement over most of the last several months. We suspect that multiple waves of states losing eligibility for extended/emergency benefits tiers may have been slightly boosting initial claims numbers as people re-filed for initial benefits. The long, slow post-recession downward trend in claims appears to have come to an end, though it may pick up again once we move past the fiscal cliff fallout.

We look for continuing claims for the week ended Sept. 22 to move up a bit from 3.271 mln to 3.280 mln. With initial claims' long sideways trend, continuing claims (counting the first 26 weeks of benefits) has basically stabilized as well."

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WHAT: Commerce Department Factory Orders, August

WHEN: Thursday 1000 EDT (1400 GMT)

FORECASTS (pct) Reuters IFR Previous Factory Orders -5.8 -5.8 +2.8

Factory ex-transp. ---- 0.0 +0.7

IFR COMMENTARY: "Following the preliminary report of a massive 13.2% plunge in August durable goods orders, IFR sees factory orders overall down about 5.8%. A rise of 1.0% in the value of nondurables orders (assisted by rising fuel prices) can only modestly blunt the fall, which would be the steepest since January 2009.

Durables orders collapsed in part due to reversion after July saw a big jump in volatile civilian aircraft and autos orders. Excluding the transportation sector, we expect factory orders to be flat, and little changed (in fact, down slightly) from the year before. That the manufacturing sector is now showing virtually no growth should come as little surprise."

-- by Theodore Littleton of IFR Markets, a unit of Thomson Reuters.

((--Reuters Economics and Markets desk, +1 212 646 6300))

((Washington newsroom, 202 898 8318))

Keywords: IFR PREVIEW/USA