Last week US intial Jobless claims hit a 7 year high, just one week laterand they hit a 16 year high. Initial Jobless claims hit 542,000 in the week of November 15th pushing the 4 week moving average through the 500k mark. I've extended the graph above back 10 years to show how high jobless claims got in the nasty recession of the early 1980's.
Turning to continuing claims, in the latest week they punched through the 4 million level, the highest level since December 1982.
Forecasts of double digit unemployment in the US would need to see intial claims push through the 600k mark stay there for some time, whilst continuing claims would head up through 4.5 million. we are not there yet, but it can't be ruled out in the current environment
Friday, 21 November 2008