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U.S. weekly jobless claims at two-month low as labor market stays resilient
Posted by: Steve G.
Date: September 01, 2022 09:20AM
It's Biden's fault!
two jobs for every unemployed person

U.S. weekly jobless claims at two-month low as labor market stays resilient

WASHINGTON, Sept 1 (Reuters) - The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell to a two-month low last week while layoffs dropped in August, suggesting the Federal Reserve would need to continue aggressively raising interest rates to slow the labor market.

The weekly unemployment claims report from the Labor Department on Thursday, the most timely data on the economy's health, also showed fewer people applied for jobless benefits in the prior week than initially estimated. The data are consistent with strong demand for workers and tight labor market conditions. The Fed has been delivering hefty rate hikes to tame inflation by dampening demand in the overall economy.

"The labor market remains strong and is giving the Fed cover to aggressively hike interest rates," said Ryan Sweet, a senior economist at Moody's Analytics in West Chester, Pennsylvania.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits decreased 5,000 to a seasonally adjusted 232,000 for the week ended Aug. 27, the lowest level since late June. Data for the prior week was revised to show 6,000 fewer applications filed than previously reported. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 248,000 applications for the latest week.

Hefty interest rate increases from the U.S. central bank have raised the risk of a recession. There is still no sign yet of widespread layoffs. The Fed has hiked its policy rate by 225 basis points since March.

Unadjusted jobless claims slipped 2,492 to 176,793 last week. There were notable declines in Connecticut, Missouri, Oklahoma and Georgia. These offset big increases in Massachusetts and New York.

The government reported this week that there were 11.2 million job openings at the end of July, with two jobs for every unemployed person. Labor market resilience continues to dispel fears that the economy is in recession after gross domestic product contracted in the first half of the year.
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