The Labor Department said jobless claims for the week ending December 9 fell unexpectedly by 11,000 to 225,000, easily beating the consensus forecast. Economists had expected initial claims to rise slightly to 239,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level was 236,000.
The 4-week moving average came in at 234,750, a decline of 6,750 from the previous week’s unrevised average of 241,500.
Claims taking procedures continue to be disrupted in the Virgin Islands. The claims taking process in Puerto Ricohas still not returned to normal.
The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending December 2 was 1,886,000, a decline of 27,000 from the previous week’s revised level. That brought the seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate down to a very low 1.3% for the week ending December 2, a 0.1% decline from the previous week’s unrevised rate.
The previous week’s level was revised up 5,000 from 1,908,000 to 1,913,000. The 4-week moving average was 1,918,500, an increase of 4,500 from the previous week’s revised average.The previous week’s average was revised up by 1,250 from 1,912,750 to 1,914,000.
Extended benefits were available in Alaska during the week ending November 25.
The highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending November 25 were in Puerto Rico (6.0), Alaska (3.9), the Virgin Islands (2.7), New Jersey (2.4), California (2.3), Montana (2.2), Connecticut (2.1), Pennsylvania (1.9), Massachusetts (1.8), Nevada (1.8), Washington (1.8), and West Virginia (1.8).
The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending December 2 were in California (+18,331), New York (+11,774), Texas (+8,862), Pennsylvania (+7,485), and Georgia (+6,368), while the largest decreases were in Vermont (-312), Nebraska (-211), Idaho (-96), and Oklahoma (-59).