2017 Economic Calendar
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Jobless Claims  
Released On 4/6/2017 8:30:00 AM For wk4/1, 2017
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
New Claims - Level258 K259 K250 K245 K to 254 K234 K
4-week Moving Average - Level254.25 K254.50 K250.00 K
New Claims - Change-3 K-2 K-25 K

A last look at the labor market before tomorrow's employment report is very positive. Initial claims in the April 1 week fell a very sharp 25,000 to a 234,000 level that is 11,000 below Econoday's low forecast. The 4-week average is down 4,500 to a 250,000 level that, however, is nearly 10,000 above the month-ago trend. This comparison does not point to improving conditions but nevertheless is consistent with very favorable conditions. Continuing claims, where data lag, are down 24,000 in the March 25 week to 2.028 million with this 4-week average at a new 17-year low of 2.023 million. There are no special factors in today's report though Louisiana had to be estimated for a second straight week.

Consensus Outlook
The trend for jobless claims has been clouded by a correction to prior data, one tied to seasonal adjustments and which has lifted recent levels. The last two weeks of initial claims, at 258,000 and 261,000, are the highest this year. Expectations for the April 1 week center on a move slightly lower to 250,000.

New unemployment claims are compiled weekly to show the number of individuals who filed for unemployment insurance for the first time. An increasing (decreasing) trend suggests a deteriorating (improving) labor market. The four-week moving average of new claims smooths out weekly volatility.  Why Investors Care
Weekly series fluctuate more dramatically than monthly series even when the series are adjusted for seasonal variation. The 4-week moving average gives a better perspective on the underlying trend.
Data Source: Haver Analytics

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