For the second week in a row, initial unemployment claims fell to 293,000, bringing them closer to pre-pandemic levels.
According to the Department of Labor, the number of first jobless claims in the United States has declined for the second week in a row to the lowest level since the start of the COVID outbreak.
The number of first jobless claims was 293,000 in the current data, which was lower than the Dow Jones projection of 318,000 and 36,000 lower than the previous week ending on October 9.
This is the first time initial claims have fallen below 300,000 since the COVID-19 outbreak pushed jobless claims into the millions. This is a good indication for the economy. The number of initial unemployed was 256,000 on March 14, 2020, before the virus began tearing a path across the economy.
The latest figures support the theory that the job market in the United States is already adjusting to the end of government unemployment benefits on Labor Day last month. Initial unemployment claims surged after they concluded on September 6, and they continued to rise throughout September before dropping in the week ending September 25.
The number of initial claims for last week was lowered slightly from 326,000 to 329,000, ending a three-week trend of rising claims.
The number of continuing claims declined by 523,426 to 3,649,013, which accounts for numbers increasing in the preceding week of September 25. The 4-week moving average of 334,250 claims was the lowest since the pre-pandemic period, topping the previous week’s record.
These figures come as authorities continue to pay greater attention to the concerns of rising inflation. The Consumer Price Index, a key indicator of inflation, indicated that prices for items, particularly food, rent, and energy, increased as year-on-year inflation averaged 5.4 percent, the highest level since January 1991.
It also comes after a weaker-than-expected September jobs data, which has raised concerns that the economic recovery is weakening.
The Federal Reserve, on the other hand, looked unconcerned by the low job numbers as it nears the end of its $120 billion per month asset buying program, which began during the epidemic.
Concerns about inflation have been expressed by Fed officials, including Chairman Jerome Powell, but they argue that it is just temporary and would subside once global supply chain constraints are removed.