Weekly Jobless Claims Remain Historically Low

States reported that 217,000 workers filed for new unemployment benefits during the week ending Oct. 29, a decrease of 1,000 from the previous week’s revised level and just under the pre-pandemic average of 218,000.

The number of workers continuing to claim unemployment benefits — 1.4 million — is still well below the pre-pandemic average of 1.7 million. The consistently low number of jobless claims for a year now come amid efforts by the Federal Reserve to cool the economy and bring down inflation, which is running near its highest levels since the early 1980s.

ADP reported yesterday that private-sector payrolls grew by 239,000 positions in October, led by gains from the leisure and hospitality industry and ahead of estimates. Wages rose 7.7% year-over-year, down just slightly from the September rate, adding to inflation worries.

In a separate report today from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nonfarm business sector labor productivity rose 0.3% in the third quarter of 2022, as output increased 2.8% and hours worked rose 2.4%.

The U.S. Labor Department’s report on how many jobs were added in October, the unemployment rate and wage gains for the month will be issued tomorrow.