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The Department of Labor reported Thursday morning that, on a seasonally adjusted basis, 341,000 people filed initial claims for unemployment for the week ending July 13, a decrease of 24,000 from last week's downwardly revised figure of 358,000, which originally was reported at 360,000. Downward revisions for initial claims are rare, having been made only seven times in 2012. For the comparable week of 2012, claims were 382,000. For the comparable week of 2009, at the depth of the Great Recession, initial claims were 546,000.

Economists say that July is a difficult month to measure initial applications for unemployment because of summer layoffs in the auto industry, which spends weeks retooling, and the Independence Day holiday. But this year most U.S. automakers did not lay workers off for retooling, or only did so for one week, because higher car sales have put pressure on production lines.

A less volatile measure, the four-week running average, dropped to 346,000, down 5,250 from the previous week's revised average of 351,250. For 2012, the weekly average was 375,000. For the first six-and-a-half months of 2013, including the most recent report, the weekly average is running 351,000.

For the week ending June 29, the number of people claiming benefits in both state and the federal emergency unemployment compensation programs was 4,519,501, down 1,903 from the previous week. For the comparable week of 2012, 5,753,820 persons claimed benefits in both programs. The number is lower because some people have found jobs and some have exhausted their eligiblity for compensation.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 05:54 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (15+ / 0-)

    Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 05:54:36 AM PDT

  •  Clearly Obamacare has strangled the (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TheLizardKing, doc2, doroma

    economy. OTOH, the sequester hasn't been too disastrous. If you take the idea that government layoffs account for about 1% U3 unemployment (IIRC), we'd be doing alright were it not for GOP austerity.

    Economics is a social *science*. Can we base future economic decisions on math?

    by blue aardvark on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 06:05:47 AM PDT

    •  don't forget that the GOP was predicting that (3+ / 0-)

      letting the tax cuts expire for the upper income "job creators" would have hurt the economy as well.

      Another GOP prediction that turned out to be just rhetoric designed to help the wealthy.  

    •  Sequestration is bad for more reasons than just (4+ / 0-)

      the government jobs lost. The multiplier on government spending applies to negative numbers, too.

      Code Monkey like freedom / Code Monkey like peace and justice too
      Code Monkey very nerdy man / With big warm fuzzy bleeding heart
      Code Monkey like you!

      Formerly known as Jyrinx.

      by Code Monkey on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 06:44:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  furloughs not layoffs? (3+ / 0-)

      At least at the federal level, my understanding is that they're making the cuts by furloughs rather than layoffs -- so people still have jobs, can't get unemployment, but their income is down 10-20%. That doesn't show up in these statistics.

      I would have expected more impact though from layoffs in federally-funded state, local, and nonprofit jobs like Head Start teachers and housing agencies.

      The GOP always insisted there was at least 10-20% fat that could be cut without harming anyone ever or affecting services or jobs. That never made any sense -- but is it possible that at least in some agencies, they were correct?

  •  The EMRATIO and U6RATE (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson

    EMRATIO has been in the narrow range of 58.5 to 58.7 for a couple of years now.  Which is lower than when Obama was inaugurated in January 2009.  The U6RATE which measures unemployment plus marginal workers working part time for economic reasons but wish full time employment is at 14.3 percent which in a population of 300 million is a whole lot of human suffering which has been ongoing for five years now.  The Depression continues.

    "The working class mind´╗┐ is strange and unpredictable" -- Ty Lookwell

    by Illinibeatle on Thu Jul 18, 2013 at 08:51:56 AM PDT

  •  Austerity has cost 2.2 millions jobs, primarily.. (3+ / 0-)

    ..due to unprecedented public sector slashing and according to Jared Berstain @ CBPP - Center on Budget & Policy Priorities it's..

    Austerity debunked & destroying our economy

     (short commercial - sorry)
     ..hardly worth re-re-repeating John Boehner blames the Presidents policies for the sluggish economy - a lie - yet it would be so good if Boehner wasn't have right in that the Dems have yet to continuously hammer home most any of the proven to work budget/solutions that the progressive caucus have repeatedly proposed.

    It the GOP can waste time (40 repeals of PPACA) certainly it wouldn't be too much to ask if we "wasted" some time hammering home solutions - real soluitions.

    Also too: the "crippling deficit crisis" that Boehner et al have used to undergird this bullshit meme could be thrown back into republicans faces as the deficit is disappearing at an unprecedented rate. Some economists, conservatives included, say too quickly.

    It's not the budget deficit , it's the job deficit"
     - Jarod Bernstein
    Thx MB

    progresive caucus budgets...progressive caucus budgets...progressive caucus budgets...repeat..

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