Thursday, January 6, 2011

Claims continue to suggest a stronger labor market


On a seasonally adjusted basis, unemployment claims have fallen by about 15% in the past three months, and are now only about 25% higher than they might be (~325K) if the economy were growing normally and the unemployment rate were relatively low. This is a major, necessary, and welcome adjustment, but it needs to be followed by a pickup in new hirings. We're likely to see that tomorrow in the December jobs report, and we saw it yesterday in the ADP estimate of new jobs. The market is expecting 175K new private sector jobs tomorrow, but the ADP report is pointing to a lot more. This could be exciting.

3 comments:

Benjamin said...

Good news. Lots of room for improvement.

Bill said...

It seems that whenever ADP surprises to the upside, the BLS surprises to the downside. I'm guessing that public sector declines will weigh on the headline number.

John said...

Bill,

I have read from from what I consider a reliable source that there is a strong correlation with the ADP and BLS numbers OVER TIME. Perhaps not week to week but the number thrown out was .94. Pretty close if accurate.

Brodero or Scott may have some data on this.