In the week ending Aug. 22, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 570,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 580,000. The 4-week moving average was 566,250, a decrease of 4,750 from the previous week's revised average of 571,000.
Yeah, ok - a quick look at the table shows the following:
There has been no meaningful change. Today's number was 570k, last week 580k, August 8th, 561k. Right up the middle. Oh, last year was 433k.
The insured total dropped to 6,133,000, a drop of 119,000. But it looks like (we don't have current-week numbers) most of that "drop" was in fact people rolling off onto extended benefits, where they're no longer in the headline number.
The bottom line remains that the employment situation remains extremely weak and shows no real sign of improvement. Yes, it is leveling off - but we're more like flat on our back than anything else.
No consumer, no economic recovery. No jobs, no consumer.
It's pretty simple, folks.