2017 Economic Calendar
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Jobless Claims  
Released On 11/16/2017 8:30:00 AM For wk11/11, 2017
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
New Claims - Level239 K236 K225 K to 249 K249 K
4-week Moving Average - Level231.25 K237.75 K
New Claims - Change10 K10 K

Jobless claims rose 10,000 but it's not due to Puerto Rico where the worst evidently is over. Initial claims in the November 11 week came in at 249,000 vs expectations for 236,000 but claims in Puerto Rico, which have been backed up since Hurricane Irma swept the Island back in September, totaled 6,565 which is down from 8,281 in the prior week. Yet claims from Puerto Rico are still about three times as high as usual which did contribute to the week's overall increase, one that lifts the 4-week average a sharp 6,500 higher to 237,750. This is the first gain for the average in 7 weeks.

Continuing claims have shown no hurricane effects and fell a sizable 44,000 in lagging data for the November 4 week to 1.860 million. The unemployment rate for insured workers is down 1 tenth to a very low 1.3 percent.

Despite the bump higher in the latest week for initial claims, the data point to very tight conditions in the labor market.

Consensus Outlook
Initial claims are expected to come in at 236,000 in the November 11 week vs 239,000 in the November 4 week. Hurricane-related claims from Puerto Rico are still a wildcard.

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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