Unemployment Numbers Drop Slightly - That’s A Good Thing
But Will They Go Right Back Up After Christmas?
By Dell Hill
US got some good news, albeit qualified, on the job front today from
the Department of Labor. The level of initial jobless claims last week fell to 366,000, the lowest level since a normal recession turned into something historically ugly:
the week ending December 10, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted
initial claims was 366,000, a decrease of 19,000 from the previous
week’s revised figure of 385,000. The 4-week moving average was
387,750, a decrease of 6,500 from the previous week’s revised average of
advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.9 percent
for the week ending December 3, unchanged from the prior week’s revised
advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the
week ending December 3 was 3,603,000, an increase of 4,000 from the
preceding week’s revised level of 3,599,000. The 4-week moving average
was 3,666,250, a decrease of 5,000 from the preceding week’s revised
average of 3,671,250.
what all of that means is - if it lasts, it’s good news. If, as
expected, the post-Christmas retail numbers flatten again, those very
same numbers are likely to go up. They always have and there’s no
compelling reason for them not to again this year.
White House will have its town criers out in force, proclaiming the
great “recovery” news, but only the naive or inexperienced will receive
that news and pop the cork on a magnum of champagne.
now experienced not one, but TWO recovery summers, according to
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden. If what we’ve seen
is a recovery, it’s going to be a very long time before Happy Days Are
president needs a full two point drop in the unemployment numbers in
order to do any serious crowing about recovery, which makes me wonder
what changes in the formula they’ll come up with to make those “numbers
that lie” seem like the truth before next November.