Thursday, May 5, 2011

US Initial Unemployment Claims

Lots of discussion of the bad initial unemployment claims number today.  The above is my version of the graph, since I didn't quite like any of the others I've seen.  Could this be some kind of turning point?  Maybe.  It's a pretty noisy series, however.  I wouldn't be too quick to express any kind of certainty at this point.

Correction: Kevin Drum emails questioning the level of the final data point, and it turns out I had made the graph from this report, without realizing that leaves off the last couple of weeks.  A corrected graph is above, and as you can see, it makes the excursion look considerably more significant.  Teach me to blog on my lunch-hour.

1 comment:

bordoe said...

But a lot of other things are confirming a slow down.

Everything from the grain complex (which seemed to have peaked in Feb) to copper to US Treasury rates (lower) to the Yen (stronger).

And then you have things like ISM trending down.

All pointing to a slow down in the economy, risk aversion, credit growth restriction (maybe contraction), etc. Add in high gas prices, and I dont think it's too far fetched to say that our economy is certainly not heading in a 'growth' direction.

I think this especially makes sense if you DO try to look for the 'growth' sectors of the US economy. Where are they?

And do they represent healthy growth or are they relying on unsustainable dynamics?