Jobless claims up somewhat to 258,000 in week to 18 March 2017

Before the letter went out yesterday, I saw that jobless claims were published. I had said I would follow them more assiduously. So I will make a brief comment on the latest numbers.

The seasonally adjusted number for the previous week was 258,000, up 15,000 from the revised level the week before. But the 4-week moving average is still only 240,000, up 1,000 from the week ago figure. This is nothing to be concerned about.

Overall, the figures tell us the US employment picture is the best it has been since the Great Recession. These numbers are consistent with adding in the order of 200,000 jobs per month and suggest we should continue to see the unemployment level fall, which means the Fed’s rate hikes can continue as planned.

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