The trend in initial claims still appears to be favorable compared to last year.
But when you look at the new claims as a percentage of those eligible to file, the difference is insignificant. The seasonal low in claims is right now. As seasonal increases pick up, we should get a better idea if the trend has reversed.
The inverse of total state claims has a strong correlation with stock prices. Total claims includes Federal extended and emergency benefits. The correlation with that is broken. I have no idea why at this point. The reduction in continuing state and total claims suggests that the stock market may have another rally left before the bull market top is complete.
Unemployed persons who exhaust their state bennies then move into the Federal programs. The rapid reduction in total claims includes those folks who exhaust their Federal benefits completely as well as job finders.
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