Thursday, July 9, 2009

A Jack-and-the-Beanstalk sized Green Shoot

- by New Deal democrat

The BLS reported this morning that weekly jobless claims fell a stunning 56,000 to 565,000.

At their peak in April, weekly jobless claims were 658,750. This is almost 100,000 less claims than then. Note that in previous years the July 4 holiday has not affected these seasonally adjusted numbers, so appears not to be an issue.

Even during the booming 1990s, weekly jobless claims averaged about 300,000-325,000 a week, so this week's figure represents an ~30% improvement.

This number is consistent with the bottom of the recession being called by the NBER right now.

I've been crunching numbers on this exact point, I will post more later when I get the chance (maybe tonight or tomorrow morning).

Consider this a Jack and the Beanstalk sized green shoot.
Update: Peter Broekvar at The Big Picture says this number was "artificially lower" because of a lack of auto plant closures.

So, was it "artificially higher" in May and June when Chrysler and GM went down?