Initial Unemployment Claims Drop. Big Deal. November 5, 2009Posted by geoff in News.
Tomorrow heralds the release of the unemployment numbers for October. 10% here we come!! But to whet your appetite, today we have the seasonally adjusted initial unemployment filings (updated this morning by the Department of Labor).
So we’re declining pretty steadily – in 5 or 6 months we could be down to the break even point (~ 350,000), where we’re no longer seeing more initial filings than hirings. Then, after that, hopefully we’ll see them continue to drop, so that we can start recovering the ~7 million jobs we’ve lost.
But all of that’s true only if the job market behaves as it has in the past, when the number of unemployed was smaller and less persistent. If the initial filings are dropping not because of fewer job losses, but because too many people are ineligible to file (being on unemployment already, for instance), then the declining number of filings isn’t a hopeful sign at all.
The only reliable statistic anymore is the actual number of employed people. Based on the filings so far, I expect tomorrow’s numbers to show that that’s dropped as well. But stand by until about 8:45 EST, and we’ll see what happens.