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Thu May 2, 2013, 10:28 AM

Jobless Claims Fall Sharply To Five-Year Low

Source: REUTERS

(Reuters) - The number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell sharply last week to its lowest level since the early days of the 2007-09 recession, suggesting the job market is still healing despite weakness in the broader economy.

Other data on Thursday showed a narrowing of the U.S. trade gap in March, although drops in imports and exports during the month gave potential warning signs over the strength of domestic and foreign demand.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 18,000 to a seasonally adjusted 324,000 the Labor Department said.

The claims report runs counter to a growing number of signals that economic activity softened in March and April, a phenomena economists have dubbed the spring swoon because it also happened in the previous two years.

Read more: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/02/us-usa-economy-jobless-idUSBRE9410LX20130502

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 10:31 AM

1. The sequester is affecting benefits. I wonder if this is accounted for in their calculation? nt

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Response to onehandle (Reply #1)

Thu May 2, 2013, 10:50 AM

4. What would the sequester have to do with first-time claims?

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 10:31 AM

2. And then there is this: Companies Hire Less, Manufacturing Growth Slows In April

(Reuters) - Companies hired the fewest employees in seven months in April while manufacturing growth slowed to a crawl, suggesting the economy has run into a soft patch as budget-cutting in Washington starts to bite.

Businesses added 119,000 employees to payrolls last month, according to the ADP National Employment Report released on Wednesday, short of economists' expectations for 150,000 jobs and the smallest gain since last September.

The slowdown was primarily due to the effect of tighter fiscal policy through a combination of an increase in payroll taxes at the start of the year and the $85 billion government spending cuts that took effect across the board in March, said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics, which jointly develops the ADP report.

"They are starting to bite and starting to weaken growth," said Zandi. "It's affecting all industries and almost all company sizes."

The Federal Reserve also expressed concern about the drag on growth linked to fiscal belt-tightening and said the central bank could lift or taper the pace of its asset purchases depending on the economy's performance.

MORE...

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/05/01/us-usa-economy-idUSBRE93P04P20130501

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 10:47 AM

3. Well paying jobs fall sharply to a five-year low.

There are tens of millions more unemployed people today then there were in the middle of the mass lay-offs of the Great Recession, when the unemployment rate was much higher. Check it out at the BLS.

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 11:05 AM

5. More bad news for the alter-universe. nt

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 11:13 AM

6. This is good news..

But it seems like economic reports are continually a mixed bag for the last few years. The economy is improving very slowly, but can't seem to really get momentum yet. One day we get 3 good reports and think things are finally looking up, and the next day we end up with a bunch of crummy news. It's very frustrating.

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Response to Imajika (Reply #6)

Thu May 2, 2013, 12:15 PM

7. Good News? Maybe

It depends how the rate is calculated. If it includes all of those that stop looking for work as well, I suspect it would be sugnificantly higher. Let's get a real number and start working on reducing that.

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 01:29 PM

8. They should serve fries with that report. n/t

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Response to Purveyor (Original post)

Thu May 2, 2013, 01:33 PM

9. not many jobs left that pay state unemployment. Other than the 'political' tax free charities.

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