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Jobless Unexpectedly Up – Most In 3 Mos

It’s Thursday, which means it’s once again time for some unexpected news on the jobs front from the Associated Press:

Jobless claims rise by largest amount in 3 months

By Martin Crutsinger, AP Economics Writer, May 2010

WASHINGTON – The number of people filing new claims for unemployment benefits unexpectedly rose last week by the largest amount in three months. The big surge was a setback to hopes that layoffs were declining.

Apparently, the uptick in new claims was so large the government statisticians couldn’t find a way to jigger the figures to make it seem like a decline. Perhaps it is all those ‘hidden people,’ coming out of the woodwork, who are making new unemployment claims.

Applications for unemployment benefits rose to 471,000 last week, up by 25,000 from the previous week, the Labor Department said Thursday. It was the first increase in five weeks and the biggest jump since a gain of 40,000 in February.

The forecast had been for claims to fall by around 4,000 from the previous week. The large rise in new claims is evidence of how volatile the job market remains, even as the economy grows.

And we know the economy is growing.

The total for new claims was the highest since claims stood at 480,000 on April 10. It also pushed the average for the last four weeks to 453,500.

Employers are hiring again, but not at levels needed to make a dent in the unemployment rate. The jobless rate actually increased in April to 9.9 percent. An improving economy has lured those who had given up looking for work back into the labor market. The jump in the unemployment rate came even though payrolls rose last month by 290,000 jobs, the biggest gain in four years

Absolutely. Who can doubt it?

For the week ending May 8, 35 states and territories saw increases in applications for new jobless benefits and 18 saw declines.

The largest increases came in California, up 8,351 because of layoffs in service industries and manufacturing, and Michigan, up by 3,175 because of layoffs in the auto industry

Gosh, how is that possible?

This article was posted by Steve on Thursday, May 20th, 2010. Comments are currently closed.

18 Responses to “Jobless Unexpectedly Up – Most In 3 Mos”

  1. canary says:

    Economy went up? People who got extensions to stay in their houses saved money, I noticed. And I think people couldn’t hold off living in poverty conditions anymore. Then there are tax returns being spent.

  2. proreason says:

    “An improving economy has lured those who had given up looking for work back into the labor market”


    Either that or the need to eat lured them back.

  3. tranquil.night says:

    Well this can’t be right. Like the notorious Thursday market ‘flash crash’ the numbers and data simply just can’t be real. After all we’re in a slow but steady economic recovery thanks to our kinglette’s lazer-like focus on jobs.

    Fatfingers strikes again – it’s all a ploy by Wall Street and big business to profit off America’s decline!

    Sigh. We joke, but our jokes too often become tomorrow’s narratives.

  4. Rusty Shackleford says:

    It’s always darkest before complete and utter failure.

    • DoctorRock says:

      You say that like it’s a bad thing! While they’re trying to figure out just where the Hope and Change thing went wrong, we’ll be moving into position to enfilade them. And I would suggest that as gentlemen, we continue uphold their ideals by embracing the very essence of diversity – for example, when they break and run, we should only act in accordance with the teachings of Sun Tzu. You know it’s nearly thirty years since we last had morning in America?

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      You have a point DR.

      Perhaps it will take devastating and irreversible destruction for the vast majority to notice. That is, horrible consequences affecting every single American. The question is, “How bad does it need to get before they notice?” and sadly, the answer appears to be “Pretty damned bad.”.

      I am just now remembering that the American people are slow to recognize trends and especially those which have potential harmful and deleterious effects, unless it’s “greenhouse gasses”. Indeed it is hilarious that people who cannot see that certain economic policies, foreign affairs actions and policies as well as other sophomoric behavior by our government is never noted as being bad, while at the same time “comprehending” that the Earth will die from overexposure to CO2 in a matter of mere decades.

      Perhaps it’s the glut of reality based TV shows that is to blame; Where “crises” are manufactured and interpersonal relationships are manipulated for entertainment value. I will have to study this further.

      In any case, the US is being and will be transformed to an unrecognizable configuration and, most likely, never resemble what it was prior to Jan of 2009. One thing that has caught my attention is that most pieces of legislation being passed have a “time bomb” effect. That is, while we may occupy ourselves with trying to undo all the damage, every so many months another democrat ratified piece of crap legislation goes into effect and undermines any good the republicans will try to do; All by design, of course.

      I can only imagine that they, in their belligerent “retirements” would be sitting there with a smirk and snidely laughing as each little legislative time bomb went off over the next ten years or so.

      They really are despicable.

  5. JohnMG says:

    ….”Employers are hiring again……”

    That’s why unemployment is up! In is out. Down is up. Black is white. Hot is cold.

    Just like Alice in Wonderland.

  6. Reality Bytes says:

    Jobs Lost = Jobs Saved.

  7. Reality Bytes says:

    Markets down 240 pts! = 600 pts saved by Obama. Pheww! What a guy!

  8. Reality Bytes says:

    Correction – 300 pts. Maybe we should give Obama that mop he talks about after all.

  9. TwilightZoned says:

    The jobless rate will continue to climb with students looking for summer jobs. On the bright side Barry can claim a bounce back once the kiddies return to school and unemployment goes down. (sarc)

  10. White_Polluter says:

    “Applications for unemployment benefits rose to 471,000 last week…. It was the first increase in five weeks and the biggest jump since a gain of 40,000 in February”

    Well, young 57 States managed decreases for five whole weeks. He’s really a fast learner. Must be that constitutional law scholar coming out in him. A couple more decades and he’ll really have the hang of it.

    But seriously, where is the paragraph blaming Bush? Did that get deleted? Someone needs to lose his job over there at the AP over that oversight.

  11. catie says:

    Wow, it is unexpected????? I am shocked!

  12. Mithrandir says:

    It makes no sense. Provided that the unemployment claims were totally and completely expected, what was anyone going to do about it?–Nothing.

    So to claim that they were ‘unexpected’ gives cover to Obama. How can he be blamed for anything? It’s all so ‘unexpected.’

    (Another AP quasi-apology to George Bush: “Sorry, we didn’t realize how difficult and ‘unexpected’ the job of being president actually was.”

  13. bobdog says:

    But wait! There’s good news! Federal, State and Local government service employee payrolls, teacher’s salaries and union manufacturing payrolls have steadily improved for the 14th consecutive month, a welcome bright spot, helped by the creation of 16,000 new IRS positions and 600,000 jobs created by the US Census. Thankfully, Congressional salaries have kept pace with inflation, allaying widespread fears of a Congressional walkout over pay and benefits.

    Take the weekend off. Beatings will resume on Monday at the regular time.

  14. J. Archer says:

    Unfortunately, The AP did indeed find a way to spin the jobless numbers.

    “Jobless Rates Drop in 34 States and D.C.”

    I do find it rather amusing that we have 2 stories both produced by AP on the same day, that contradict each other.

    • J. Archer says:

      Bah, NM. The articles came out on the same day, by my article talks about last months numbers.

  15. untrainable says:

    Whoever these weasels are that are in charge of predicting for the government are surprised by everything. Every time the numbers come out, they are unexpected. Maybe they should get new predictors. I suggest a squad of chimps, or maybe a couple of pigs. If they were wrong, at least there would be fresh bacon.

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