2014 Economic Calendar
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Jobless Claims  
Released On 5/29/2014 8:30:00 AM For wk5/24, 2014
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
New Claims - Level326 K327 K317 K315 K to 325 K300 K
4-week Moving Average - Level322.50 K322.75 K311.50 K
New Claims - Change28 K29 K-27 K

Jobless claims fell sharply in the May 24 week, down 27,000 to 300,000. The 4-week average is down a very sharp 11,250 to a new recovery low of 311,500.

Continuing claims are also down, falling 17,000 in lagging data for the May 17 week to a new recovery low of 2.631 million. The 4-week average is down 33,000 to 2.655 million, also a recovery low. The unemployment rate for insured workers, also at a recovery low, held steady at 2.0 percent.

There are no special factors in today's report though initial claims cover the approach to the Memorial Day holiday, a factor that will limit the effect of the report on the markets. Nevertheless, the report is a positive and falls in line with the building run of positive economic news.

Consensus Outlook
Initial jobless claims rose a sharp 28,000 in the May 17 week to a 326,000 level. The May 17 week is the sample week for the monthly employment report and a comparison with the sample week for the April employment report is not favorable. The weekly level of 326,000 is 21,000 higher from the April 12 week with the 4-week average more than 10,000 higher, at 322,500 vs 312,000.

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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