The seasonally adjusted weekly unemployment claims of 371,000 and +4,000 (preliminary) for the week ended January 5, 2013 rose to a 5-week high. However, this is below the 2012 weekly average of 374,673. The prior week claims were revised downwards from 372,000 to 367,000. The current claims will probably be revised upwards to 372,000+ next week.
The short, intermediate, and long-term trends (13-week, 26-week, and 52-week moving averages) have begun increasing slightly or at least leveled. The 4-week moving average, seasonally adjusted, has increased to 365,750, a 3-week high, after reaching a near post-recession low of 359,000 last week.
USA Weekly Unemployment Insurance Claims (seasonally adjusted) The post-recession low has been 342,000 for the week ending October 6, 2012 and before Hurricane Sandy created a spike in claims. That was the lowest since 339,000 for the week ending February 16, 2008. The intermediate-term peaks have been 464,000 for the WE 4-30-11 and 451,000 for the WE 11-10-12.
USA Weekly Unemployment Insurance Claims by Year (seasonally adjusted) Claims peaked during the Great Recession in 2009 at a weekly average of 574,173. Average weekly claims were above 400,000 from 2008 through 2011. The weekly average of 374,673 in 2012 has been the post-recession cyclical low. After only one week in 2013, the weekly average is 371,000 (preliminary).
Weekly Unemployment Claims History (seasonally adjusted) Weekly unemployment claims first reached 500,000 in the Great Recession cycle in November 2008. Claims then reached 600,000 in January 2009, peaking at 667,000 for the week ending March 28, 2009. Weekly claims continued above 500,000 until November 2009. Weekly claims have been below 500,000 since the week ending November 21, 2009 except for 4 occasions.
Annual Revision (seasonally adjusted data) Effective 3-29-12, the data reflects the annual revision to the weekly unemployment claims seasonal adjustment factors. The seasonal adjustment factors used for the UI Weekly Claims data from 2007 forward, along with the resulting seasonally adjusted values for initial claims and continuing claims, have been revised.