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Jobless Claims Drop More Than Expected!

From the Associated Press:

Initial jobless claims drop more than expected

By Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer

March 25, 2010

WASHINGTON – New claims for unemployment benefits fell more than expected last week as layoffs ease and hiring slowly recovers.

The Labor Department said Thursday that first-time claims for jobless benefits dropped by 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 442,000. That’s below analysts’ estimates of 450,000, according to Thomson Reuters.

But most of the drop resulted from a change in the calculations the department makes to seasonally adjust the data, a Labor Department analyst said. Excluding the effect of those adjustments, claims would have fallen by only 4,000

The four-week average of claims, which smooths [sic] volatility, dropped by 11,000 to a seasonally adjusted 453,750, the department said, the lowest since September 2008, when the financial crisis intensified

Never mind that according to the AP the recession began in December 2007 – when unemployment stood at a whopping 5%, and new unemployment claims were no where near these numbers.

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, March 25th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

20 Responses to “Jobless Claims Drop More Than Expected!”

  1. mr_bill says:

    New jobless claims [appear to] fall

    The number of workers filing new applications for unemployment insurance fell sharply last week, while the number of those on continued benefits was the lowest since December 2008, a government report showed on Thursday.

    That sounds like a big f***ing deal, I wonder why the decrease…

    Initial claims for state unemployment benefits fell 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 442,000 in the week ended March 20, the Labor Department said. The report included annual revisions to the weekly unemployment claims seasonal factors going back to 2005.

    Oh, they changed how they count “unemployed!” When the numbers don’t say what you want them to say, you just change the numbers.

    Using the old seasonal factors, claims would have dropped only to 453,000, a Labor Department official said.

    Wow, that would have been a drop of 3000, but with some tweaking of the methodology, they can report a decrease of nearly 5 times that.

    Analysts polled by Reuters had expected claims to slip to 450,000 from a previously reported 457,000 the prior week.


    So this report is actually worse than expected. If that’s the case, the headline should say something about unemployment being unexpectedly higher than forcast, shouldn’t it? I said it a month ago and I’ll say it again: why don’t they just declare that unemployment is zero, it would be just as meaningful as these massaged numbers without all the cumbersome manipulation.

    Edit: Just refreshed the S&L homepage, looks like you beat me to it Steve.

  2. oki2 says:

    Just so I’m clear on this. This is saying that the number of NEW claims was less than expected? They expected 456,000 NEW claims but only got 442,000 NEW claims? Does this still mean that 442,000 people began claiming unemployment?

    • mr_bill says:

      oki2, you are correct, first time claims fell to 453,000 (if you use the same methodology for seasonal adjustments as previous numbers were adjusted with) or 442,000 (if you use the new adjustment method). Its important to note that since the methodology for “seasonal adjustments” has been changed (no doubt to show a decrease in initial claims), the new figure cannot accurately be compared to any previous reported numbers, which were calculated with a different process.

      The Dept. of Labor report has a separate figure for continuing claims, although this number cannot be compared to historical numbers because the extensions of unemployment benefits granted by this congress are far longer than any previously granted.

  3. bill says:

    But most of the drop was due to fiddling with the mathematics … So in otherwords, not true.

    Always wait for the revisions not the first wild arse guesses.

  4. proreason says:


    Except of course, for the 442,000, or 450,000, or 453,750, or wtf they want the number to be, people who went on the breadline last month.

    Now they are held close to the tender bosom of our benevolent kinglette.

    If they are really lucky, they will come down with some deadly illness, so he can nurse them back to health by robbing some rich people.

  5. jobeth says:

    “Using the old seasonal factors”…?

    In a year where O’Balmy’s economic destruction has taken it’s toll, how can you compare this year with another year where his tactics have not had an effect? Ya think there might be a tad of difference?

    I’m always amused by this type of joblessness claim.

    Once the water all leaks out of that hole in the bucket there just ain’t no more water to be had!

    Of course the leak is less

    This is what is happening. We are getting near the end of the small business that were hanging on by a fingernail and have finally fallen.

    No new businesses…so no jobs there to lose there.

    So now we are surprised the number is tapering off?

    Makes me want to use that famous intellectual term..”.Well…..DUUUUHH!”

    • jobeth says:

      Hearing about the high cost to these large companies are going to incur due to Obama’s health care regs, get ready for another tier of layoffs.

      I can see a huge uptick in the coming months of new unemployment apps.

      Here we go again. And don’t forget how long these folks get to stay on unemployment benefits…on the tax payer dime.

      How long before we completely turn inside out and collapse. Obalmy is hurrying as fast as he can. This is his only chance to do it before he’s outta here. He may come close too.

  6. tranquil.night says:

    Consolidation and bunkering.

    At this point if I were one of these businesses about to be run out of town by these taxes and regulations I might just start arming up and refusing to comply.

  7. proreason says:

    I can see a huge uptick in the coming months of new unemployment apps.

    Thank goodness for ObamyCare !!!

  8. Right of the People says:

    Half a million is still half a million, I don’t care how you “adjust” it.

    Steve is right, when we had 5% unemployment under President Bush according to the Lame Stream Media it was a WHOPPING 5%, but now that it is under 10%, it has dropped to a more moderate 9.7%.

    This is like how they keep revising the history textbooks to the point where no white man has ever done anything of significance in the 230+ years of our history.

    • GL0120 says:

      230 + years of our history?
      What history?
      To a liberal, there can be no history, nothing happened before they came onto the scene.
      An American Revolution? Never happened.
      Civil War? Never heard of it.
      Civil rights? Get serious, blacks are still oppressed.
      Pulling European chestnuts out of the flames twice? What are you talking about?
      There was nothing before Obama, there can be nothing without Obama, Obama will save us from ourselves, praise Obama.

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      Well, I think they said that in the 1800’s somewhere, some black guy made a machine that got the seeds out of cotton. But between 1700 and 2010…..nothing much happened until barry became prezdint.

    • jobeth says:

      The current unemployment is “only” at 9.7%. That of course is the average. Which means half the country is ABOVE 9.7%.

      My area is at nearly 18%.

    • jobeth says:


      “Civil rights? Get serious, blacks are still oppressed.”

      I can add to that…Republicans being instrumental in passing the Civil Rights Bill…and it was a Republican president (Lincoln) who freed the slaves.

      True history tells us that the dems fought tooth and nail to kill the civil rights bill and its implementation. (Wallace…Bird…and many others)

      The progressives weren’t interested in the welfare of the black person…but found their vote very attractive…thus their lip service and entitlement promises to them in exchange for that vote.

      But none of that will ever be revealed in a progressives version of history.

  9. Rusty Shackleford says:

    My main concern is if the seasonal adjustment smooth(e)s out fluctuations.

    There is a joke somewhere in all this somewhere about how city-slickers count vs the country hick. I just can’t think of it at the moment.

  10. GL0120 says:

    This is ridiculous!
    Of course they’ve dropped more than “Expected,” anyone who’s ever submitted a budget knows how this works – project higher than you need in anticipation of your projection being cut by a certain percent.
    The administration simply leaks to their lap dogs in the press that they believe that unemployment will hit 500,000 for a certain period. When it comes in at 450,000, their lap dogs run articles praising the economic policies and geniuses that “held” unemployment to “only” 450,000!
    The fact that 450,000 people lost jobs is never acknowledged so therefore, it never happened.

  11. Liberals Demise says:

    Gee ……. kinda makes me wanna break out in a Show Tune and dance.
    Only 442,000?
    They gotta be partying somewhere.
    Just not at the houses of the 442,000.

    • GL0120 says:

      Will you be dancing to Bawney Fwank’s tune – “Banking Queen?”

    • JohnMG says:

      Every time I hear Frank’s name I immediately get a mental picture of this purple dinosaur. Why IS that?

    • Liberals Demise says:

      Because queers adore purple and they know Mr. Fwanks is a dinosaur.
      Fagosaurous Rex, I believe.

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