Unexpected Drop in U.S. Jobless Claims Shows Sturdy Job MarketBy
Filings for jobless benefits in the U.S. unexpectedly settled back last week, underscoring a resilient labor market even as the Atlantic hurricane season introduces added volatility to the figures, Labor Department data showed Thursday.
Highlights of Jobless Claims (Week ended Sept. 9)
Applications for unemployment insurance last week were estimated for Florida, Georgia and South Carolina -- states that were impacted by Hurricane Irma. Meanwhile, Texas reported an unadjusted 11,800 decrease in filings, following a Hurricane Harvey-related 51,683 surge in the week ended Sept. 2.
The spike was responsible for breaking total initial claims out of a subdued pattern. Harvey, which made landfall on Aug. 25, and Irma will probably continue to add to the swings in the jobless claims data.
Before the storm-related volatility, the overall labor market had been making progress. Employers remain averse to firing people as there’s a shortage of qualified workers. That has kept the underlying trend in jobless claims near the lowest level in more than four decades.
- Unemployment rate among people eligible for benefits held at 1.4 percent in week ended Sept. 2
- Claims were also estimated for the Virgin Islands because of Irma
— With assistance by Kristy Scheuble