For a 3rd straight week, Initial Jobless Claims were above 380k. At 388k for the week ended Saturday, it’s 13k above expectations and last week was revised up by 3k to 389k. The 4 week average moved up to 382k from 376k, the highest since early Jan. Bottom line, the 1st week above 380k we were able to cite Good Friday as a reason in distorting the seasonals. The 2nd week in a row above 380k we said it bears watching. Now the 3rd week in a row above 380k and it’s more clear that the downward trend in firing’s has stopped for now. It’s possible though that we’re still feeling the other side of the mild winter weather that kept seasonal workers working longer than they would have than with a normal winter and now we’re seeing the give back continuing. Continuing Claims rose by 3k to a 3 week high but Extended Benefits fell by 60k.
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