Hopeful Sign? U.S. Unemployment Claims Fall To 2 Month Low

jobless claims


WASHINGTON, Sept 27 (Reuters) - The number of Americans filing new claims for jobless benefits fell last week to the lowest level in two months, a hopeful sign for a labor market that has struggled to gain traction in recent months.

Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 26,000 to a seasonally adjusted 359,000, the lowest level since July, the Labor Department said on Thursday. The prior week's figure was revised up to show 3,000 more applications than previously reported.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast claims falling to 378,000 last week. The four-week moving average for new claims, a better measure of labor market trends, fell 4,500 to 374,000, breaking five straight weeks of increases.

A Labor Department official said there were no special factors influencing the report and no states had been estimated.

The labor market has been mired in weakness as worries about higher taxes and deep government spending cuts in January, the ongoing debt problems in Europe and slowing global growth lead employers to be cautious about ramping up hiring.

More: 10 Industries Set To Boomr


Sluggish job gains and stubbornly high unemployment spurred the Federal Reserve this month into launching a third round of bond purchases to drive down already low interest rates.

The U.S. central bank vowed to buy $40 billion worth of mortgage-backed securities each month until it sees a sustained upturn in the labor market.

The unemployment rate has been stuck above 8 percent for more than three years, the first time this has happened since the Great Depression, a hurdle for President Barack Obama's quest for a second term in office.

The claims report showed the number of people still receiving benefits under regular state programs after an initial week of aid fell 4,000 to 3.27 million in the week ended Sept. 15.

The so-called continuing data covered the week for the household survey from which the unemployment rate is derived.


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chris1011

One more time- Business CEO's DO NOT MAKE GOOD POLITICAL LEADERS. Businesses are a Fascist Dictatorship, democratic government is ruled by consensus. This man is so far removed from the reality of an average person, he cannot have the empathy or the experience to make decisions that benefit ALL of the classes or citizens. Throw in a rigid belief in a strict religious dogma, and you have Mitt, the unelectable candidate.

September 28 2012 at 7:40 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
chris1011

Mitt will never get that this is a country, not a business. It is filled with people, not goods to be sold. You do not get an executive bonus for firing people or cutting their unemployment benefits or social security. Anyone who wants to run a country like a business doesn't understand what being president means.

September 28 2012 at 4:05 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
chris1011

Here's a video of Romney in his early years at Bain, explaining his purpose in acquiring companies was to "harvest them at significant profit.
"http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0EsxNYXW5i8&feature=player_embedded

Watch Romney himself explain the purpose of Bain Capital to his fellow shareholders.

No one should be surprised. After all, Bain Capital wasn't in the business of creating jobs. It was in the business of creating profits.

The two goals aren't at all the same -- as Americans whose jobs have been eliminated or whose wages and benefits have been cut know all too well.

For years, higher corporate profits have come at the expense of fewer jobs and lower wages. Business leaders and financiers have been "harvesting" like mad, leaving most Americans behind in the dirt.

September 28 2012 at 12:38 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
ectullis

The claims may have fallen because they have ran out. I just lost a decent part time job in July. Obsama must go

September 28 2012 at 4:28 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
g.ga4

My neighbor quit looking to apply for a job as an airplane mechanic. He and dozens of his colleagues did the same thing. They'll try to apply again onced their un-employment benefits expires in 3 years. NAFTA at work.

September 28 2012 at 1:45 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
kafienkarl

While introducing President Obama at a campaign rally in Virginia Beach, Senator Jim Webb criticized Mitt Romney for not thanking, or even mentioning members of our armed forces, and veterans in his RNC convention speech. Senator Webbs suggested that Romney's oversight is made worse by the fact that he did not serve in the military when he could have. Romney received exemptions from the draft for college, and then to serve as a missionary.


“If nothing else, at least mention some word of thanks and respect when a presidential candidate who is their generational peer makes a speech,” said Webb, a former Navy secretary and decorated Marine who served in Vietnam. ... “This was a time when every American male was eligible to be drafted. People made choices,” Webb said. “Those among us who stepped forward to face the harsh unknowns did so with the belief that their service would be honored.”
Senator Webb also blasted Romney for suggesting that 47% of Americans feel they are victims who are entitled to federal handouts. Many recipients of federal benefits are veterans who served their country in war, or their families.

“Those young Marines that I led have grown older now. All gave some. Some gave all. That’s not a culture of dependency,” he said. ”They paid. Some with their lives, some with their wounds, disabilities. Some with emotional scars. Some with lost opportunities. Not only did they pay, they are owed. They are owed.”
Although veterans affairs is a common theme in the president’s speeches, he hit the subject harder than usual Thursday.

“As Jim Webb so eloquently stated, when our troops take off their uniforms, we will serve them as well as they served us,” Obama said when he took the stage. “No one who fights for this country should have to fight for a job or a roof over their heads when they come home.”

September 27 2012 at 10:58 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to kafienkarl's comment
ectullis

BHOzo is the biggest hypocrite we have ever had.

September 28 2012 at 4:30 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down Reply
kafienkarl

Roll Call Staff
Sept. 27, 2012, 6:03 p.m.

Saul Loeb/AFP/GettyImage

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Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) joined President Barack Obama in Virginia Beach today and issued a stinging attack on Mitt Romney's failure to mention veterans during his presidential nomination acceptance speech, while also noting that Romney did not serve in the military.
"They will not say this, so I will say it for them. They are owed, if nothing else, at least a mention, some word of thanks and respect, when a presidential candidate who is their generational peer makes a speech accepting his party's nomination to be commander in chief," Webb said, according to his prepared remarks. "And they are owed much more than that - a guarantee that we will never betray the commitment that we made to them and to their loved ones."
The former Marine and Navy secretary appeared to poke at Romney for receiving draft deferments during the Vietnam War.
"Gov. Romney and I are about the same age. Like millions of others in our generation, we came to adulthood facing the harsh realities of the Vietnam War," Webb said, adding that he didn't envy or resent choices people made about how to handle the draft as a long as they did so under the law.

September 27 2012 at 10:56 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
kafienkarl

Remember Romney insulted 47% of the voters by saying that they say they are 'victims' and feel 'entitled'. Don't think any of those 47% aren't Republicans? Think Again.

September 27 2012 at 10:54 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
kafienkarl

Watching alittle piece on Romney and how he protested for the Vietnam War. A war he supported, he even supported the draft but did he go to the Vietnam War? Nope....... Romney went to France instead.

September 27 2012 at 10:48 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
Kay

Better yet! How many people have quit looking for work? I know that here in Michigan the numbers are quite high. People have run out of unemployment benefits and still haven't found a job.

September 27 2012 at 10:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Kay's comment
democracks0

Obamites don't look for work they just wait for the welfare check to come in the mail.

September 27 2012 at 10:24 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mitchnoconnell

Better yet! I know that Romney felt very comfortable going back to his home state of Michigan...he was really witty when he said "the trees are just the right height" in Michigan...

September 27 2012 at 11:05 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to mitchnoconnell's comment
democracks0

Yeah I know Obama feels very uncomfortable going back to his home town of Chicago where people are shot and killed everyday. His buddy Rahm is doing such a stand up job. LOL and also bullying the Chicago teachers union president Karen Lewis. You know how those democrats are always waging war on women.

September 28 2012 at 12:28 AM Report abuse -4 rate up rate down