US weekly jobless claims remain at low level | World News

Apr18,2024



number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits Last week's low was unchanged, indicating continued labour market Strength.
The elasticity of the labor market, which is driving the economy, coupled with increased inflation, has led financial markets and some economists to expect that federal Reserve cutting may be delayed Rate of interest until September. Some economists doubt that the US central bank will lower borrowing costs this year.
“Overall, layoffs remain low. We expect the current trend to continue, with a softening of hiring rather than an increase in layoffs leading to further adjustment in the labor market,” said Rubella Farooqui, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics. “
The U.S. Labor Department said Thursday that initial claims for state unemployment benefits were unchanged at a seasonally adjusted 212,000 for the week ending April 13.
Economists polled by Reuters had expected 215,000 claims in the latest week. Claims this year are jumping into the 194,000-225,000 range.
Unadjusted claims fell 6,756 last week to 208,509. Filings in California increased by 3,063. Claims also increased significantly in Connecticut, Georgia and Oregon.
These were more than the 4,551 decline in filings in New Jersey. Claims in the state had risen over the past week, a move that was attributed to layoffs in the accommodation and food services, transportation and warehousing, and public administration industries. Enrollments also declined significantly in Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell declined to provide any guidance on Tuesday about when rates might be cut, saying monetary policy needed to remain accommodative for longer. Financial markets initially expected the first rate cut to occur in March, but the timing was pushed back to June and now September as labor market and inflation data continued to surprise in the first three months of the year.
The US central bank has kept its policy rate in the range of 5.25%-5.50% since July. It has increased the benchmark overnight interest rate by 525 basis points from March 2022.
The claims data covers the period during which the government surveyed businesses and other establishments for the non-farm payrolls component of the April employment report. Claims were unchanged between the March and April survey weeks. The economy added 303,000 jobs in March.
The Fed's latest “Beige Book” report on Wednesday described employment as growing at an “overall modest pace” since late February, adding that “many districts reported improvements in employee retention “, and others have pointed to staff reductions at some firms.”
It also said that despite improvements in labor supply, “a persistent shortage of qualified applicants for certain positions, including machinists, trades workers and hospitality workers, has been reported in many districts.”
Next week's data on the number of people receiving benefits after the initial week of aid, a proxy for hiring, will give more clues on the state of the labor market in April. So-called continuing claims rose by 2,000 to 1.812 million during the week ending April 6, the claims report shows.
Although still low by historical standards, the slightly elevated level of continued claims suggests that some unemployed workers may take longer to find new jobs.



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