Jobless Claims Hit More Than 44-Year Low

By Thomson/Reuters – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

[Fewer people losing jobs is good news, but it doesn’t address how many Americans have been unemployed for so long that they’ve given up hope of finding a job. I prefer this ‘Participation Rate’ chart. -Bob]

The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits fell to its lowest level in more than 44 years last week, pointing to a rebound in job growth after a hurricane-related decline in employment in September.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 22,000 to a seasonally adjusted 222,000 for the week ended Oct. 14, the lowest level since March 1973, the Labor Department said on Thursday.

Markets Are Misreading the Data

By Graham Summers – Re-Blogged From Gains, Pains & Capital

The US markets are in a quandary.

On the one hand, some of the data (GDP growth, unemployment, etc.) suggests the Fed should continue to hike rates. On the other hand, other data points (food stamp usage, labor participation rate) suggest the US never actually entered a real recovery.

More importantly, how can the jobs data suggest such a strong employment situation… when one in seven Americans are on food stamps?

Let us, consider how the Labor Department calculates the unemployment numbers… those same numbers that the ENTIRE stock market reacts to every few weeks.

Every month, the US Government conducts a “Current Population Survey” through which it calls or visits 60,000 US households and asks them questions about their current employment or lack thereof. This usually occurs on the week of the month containing the 12th.

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