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More Jobless Claims ‘Signals Job Growth’

From a relentlessly sunny Associated Press:

More people applied for unemployment aid last week

Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer, Thursday January 6, 2011

WASHINGTON (AP) — More Americans applied last week for unemployment benefits, one week after applications fell to the lowest level in more than two years.

Applications rose by 18,000 to a seasonally adjusted 409,000 in the week ending Jan. 1, the Labor Department said Thursday. They fell to 391,000 in the previous week, the lowest point since July 2008.

Never mind that the previous week’s jobless numbers were artificially shortened by the Christmas holiday. The AP manages to report these misleading numbers twice in their first two paragraphs.

Fewer than 425,000 people seeking unemployment benefits signals modest job growth

You see? Even when the number of people seeking jobless benefits goes up that means "job growth."

For the record, here is how the economic gurus at Reuters are spinning these latest figures:

Jobless claims up, underlying trend still down

WASHINGTON | Thu Jan 6, 2011

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – New claims for jobless benefits moved higher last week, but a decline in the four-week average to a nearly 2-1/2 year low indicated a trend toward better labor market conditions remained intact.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 18,000 to a seasonally adjusted 409,000, the Labor Department said on Thursday, above economists’ expectations for 400,000. The prior week’s figure was revised up to 391,000 from the previously reported 388,000

Note that Reuters at least has to honesty to note how last week’s claim numbers were once again revised upward. A detail the AP seldom mentions.

The government is expected to report on Friday that nonfarm payrolls increased 175,000 last month after November’s surprisingly small 39,000 gain.

The unemployment rate is expected to have edged down to 9.7 percent from 9.8 percent in November….

Let’s hope the economists aren’t wrong. After all, they have to be right once in a while, don’t they, just by the law of averages?

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Thursday, January 6th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “More Jobless Claims ‘Signals Job Growth’”

  1. proreason

    This explains why there are no unemployed Climate Scientists.

    Some have been hired by the government to invent the unemployment statistics. The rest have been hired by “news agencies” to interpret the statistics.

  2. yadayada

    “December jobs report seen showing greater hiring”
    By Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer
    January 7, 2010

    “Payrolls seen hitting seven-month high”
    By Lucia Mutikani
    January 7, 2010

    “More people applied for unemployment aid last week”
    Christopher S. Rugaber, AP Economics Writer
    Thursday January 6, 2011

    fewer claims signal growth.
    more claims signal growth.

    It’s no wonder we’re in a mess. no one seems to know whether the economy is doing well or poor. when your compass spins like jack sparrow’s you don’t know which way to turn.
    just trust the experts in the media, they’ll straighten it out and point us in the right direction.


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