Jobless Claims Turn Higher; Productivity Up, Costs Down
New U.S. claims for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week while unit labor costs fell in the third quarter, underlining the persistent weakness in the jobs market.
Although other data on Thursday showed nonfarm productivity rebounded at a much stronger-than-expected 1.9 percent annual rate in the third quarter, the general tone remained consistent with a sluggish economy.
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 20,000 to a seasonally adjusted 457,000, the Labor Department said, reversing the prior week's decline.
Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast claims rising to 443,000 from the previously reported 434,000. The government revised the prior week's figure up to 437,000.
In a second report, the department said unit labor costs, a gauge of potential inflation pressures closely watched by the Federal Reserve, fell at a 0.1 percent rate after rising a revised 1.3 percent in the second quarter.
"This suggests the labor market is not improving as much as we hoped .... and suggests there hasn't been that much of a change between September and October labor market conditions," said Zach Pandl, a U.S. economist at Nomura Securities International in New York.
Can someone please say the words.... 'the 2nd great depression is upon us'.
Mini bear rally should end soon... a crash to follow?