Jobless Claims Up 10.8% in Week Ending April 9, 2022

But continuing claims fall by 3.2%

Initial claims for unemployment insurance across the U.S. were 185,000 for the week ending April 9, 2022, on a seasonally adjusted basis. This was up by 18,000 (10.8%) from the revised figure for the prior week. The number for the previous week was revised upward by 0.6%, from 166,000 to 167,000. The four-week moving average for initial claims was 172,250, up by 2,000 (1.2%) from the revised figure for the prior week (revised from 170,000 to 170,250).

The initial claims figure of 185,000 for the week ending April 9 was 8.8% above the consensus estimate of 170,000, per economists polled by Bloomberg. Continuing claims were 1,475,000, 1.7% below the estimate of 1,500,000.

Key Takeaways

  • Initial claims for unemployment insurance in the week ending April 9, 2022, were up by 10.8% from the prior week.
  • However, continuing claims dropped by 3.2%.
  • The new claims figure was 8.8% above economists' estimates, but continuing claims were 1.7% lower.

Continuing Claims Decline

Unemployment insurance continuing claims fell, although compilation of this data lags new claims by one week. For the week ending April 2, 2022, the number of continuing claims, also called the number of insured unemployed persons, was 1,475,000, a decrease of 48,000 (3.2%) from the unrevised figure of 1,523,000 for the prior week, on a seasonally adjusted basis.

The four-week moving average for continuing claims fell by 29,750 (1.9%) from the unrevised figure for the prior week to 1,511,500. The previous week's unrevised moving average had been 1,541,250.

Adjusted vs. Unadjusted Data

The seasonally adjusted nationwide initial claims figure of 185,000 cited above for the week ending April 9, 2022, was derived from an unadjusted figure of 222,545. The unadjusted figure rose by 28,151 (14.5%) from 194,394 in the prior week. However, the normal seasonal factors observed at this time of year should have led to an increase of 6,692 (3.4%) from the prior week to 201,086 in the week ending April 9, 2022, all else equal. During the comparable week in 2021, there were 620,420 initial claims.

Initial Jobless Claims by State

Note that the statistics compiled by the U.S. Department of Labor also include the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, in addition to the 50 states. Of these, 18 reported declines in new claims for the week ending April 9, 2022, while 35 reported increases. As indicated above, total unadjusted claims rose by 28,151 for this week.

The biggest declines in unadjusted new claims were in Ohio (-4,088), Wisconsin (-1,147), and Oklahoma (-964). The largest increases were in Missouri (+7,061), Michigan (+5,928), California (+4,104), Indiana (+3,481), and Texas (+2,352). Six other states recorded increases of more than 1,000: Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, New York, and Pennsylvania.

The U.S. Department of Labor cautions that the breakdown by state for the week ending April 9, 2022, contains what are called advance claims. These advance claims are reported by the state liable for paying the unemployment compensation. Data for previous weeks classify claimants by state of residence. Thus, the state-by-state figures for the week ending April 9, 2022, and for prior weeks, are not completely comparable.

For comparable figures, the Department of Labor instead looks at the data for a week earlier, which ended April 2, 2022. The largest increases in initial claims for that week, compared to the week before that, were in Ohio (+1,509), Pennsylvania (+1,478), California (+1,082), Illinois (+509), and Florida (+466), while the largest decreases were in Michigan (-2,491), Texas (-2,487), New Jersey (-1,105), Kentucky (-1,046), and New York (-866).

Highest Insured Unemployment Rates

Meanwhile, the highest insured unemployment rates for the week ending March 26, 2022, were in  California (2.4%), New Jersey (2.3%), Alaska (2.1%), Minnesota (2.0%), Massachusetts (1.9%), Rhode Island (1.9%), New York (1.8%), Georgia (1.7%), Illinois (1.7%), and Puerto Rico (1.7%).

The advance seasonally adjusted national figure for the week ending April 2, 2022, was 1.1%, unchanged from the unrevised figure for the prior week. The insured unemployment rate is the ratio of persons receiving unemployment benefits to the total number of persons in the labor force.

During the week ending March 26, 2022, extended unemployment benefits were available in New Jersey.

Article Sources
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  1. U.S. Department of Labor. "News Release: Unemployment Weekly Claims, April 14, 2022," Pages 1-2.

  2. Yahoo Finance. "Jobless Claims: Another 185,000 Americans Filed New Claims Last Week."

  3. U.S. Department of Labor. "News Release: Unemployment Weekly Claims, April 14, 2022," Pages 3-5.

  4. Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. "Labor Market Slack and the Insured Unemployment Rate."

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