Initial Jobless Claims Dropped, But Unadjusted Claims Soared

This morning the government reported that initial jobless claims decreased by 25,000 from last week’s upwardly adjusted 295,000 to 270,000. Sounds like good news, right? Well, not really.

The real story, however, is how the DOL is doing all it can to smooth the noise, because in the week ended December 1, Not Seasonally Adjusted Initial Claims soared by 139,678 – the highest since January, to a whopping 498,619. Compare this to the SA number of 370,000, and one can see why in the aftermath of Sandy, it is quite clear that between hurricane distortions and seasonal adjustments, the headline number is completely meaningless. Confirming this was the surge in Continuing Claims, which ripped from 2,835,671 to 3,301,200, an increase in continuing claims of 465,529, or nearly half a million, in one week! (Read More)

Oh, and more than 100,000 ran out of unemployment benefits, so they won’t be counted in the unemployment rate and will probably wind up filing disability claims.

In related news, according to Gallup, unemployment is now up to 8.3%

U.S. unemployment, as measured by Gallup without seasonal adjustment, was 7.8% for the month of November, up significantly from 7.0% for October. Gallup’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate is 8.3%, nearly a one-point increase over October’s rate.

They also found underemployment to be at 17.2%. I doubt the situation will improve any time soon, as the economy isn’t creating anywhere near enough jobs to give the underemployed better prospects or for the unemployed to find work. With Obama hell bent on taking us over the cliff and raising taxes things are probably going to get worse.

Update: Linked by Expose the Media – thanks!