Yesterday’s initial jobless claims number came to 452K, slightly below analyst expectations of 455K. This is good news.
On the other hand, the prior week’s 462K initial release was revised higher to 475K. This is bad news.
At this point, however, it’s barely news at all. As illustrated in today’s issue of The Schork Report, the trend for initial jobless claims is effectively flat. There is a slight decreasing gradient, but it accounts for only 19 fewer claims a week. Not 19K claims, 19 claims.
We began the year at 456K claims, and currently stand at 452K, a 0.87% change. Over the same time, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has risen 6.89%, industrial production has risen 3.00%, retail sales have risen 3.51% and the price of NYMEX WTI has risen 1.73%.
There are two conclusions here.