In what could be contemplated as a shimmering beacon of hope for a still-struggling US labour market, US Labour Department said earlier on Thursday that the number of Americans of applying for state unemployment benefits for the first time in their lives fell last week as a drop in pandemic cases stokes possibilities that re-hiring may gather steam in Spring.
Nonetheless, US labour market continues to tread water, but investors’ sentiment seemed to be edging higher with new orders for US-made core capital goods picking up. Apart from that, according to Labour Department data released earlier in the day, the weekly jobless claims report had underscored a relatively healing labour market wounds with an approximated 20 million people picking up state unemployment aids in late-January, largely catalysed by a stall in some state unemployment benefits.
However, there had been sizable uptick in unemployment claims in the US state of California and Ohio as a pandemic-led wintry chill was still inflicting pains in the labour market, though many analysts suggested that a rollout of pandemic vaccine coupled with a rise in orders for US-made goods and services would likely to lead to a healthy economic environment in a near term.
US unemployment claims fall last week as analysts see recovery by Spring
In tandem, according to Labour Department’s weekly initial jobless claims for the week that ended on February 6, first-time claims dropped by 36,534 to 813,145 on an unadjusted basis, while on a seasonally adjusted basis, initial claims slipped 19,000 to a still-staggering reading of 793,000.
More importantly, first-time jobless claims were largely rangebound between 711,000-842,000 level since last October, remaining above their peak of 665,000 registered during the great financial depression of 2007-09, though the readings had been nosedived sharply since hitting an all-time high of 6.86 million recorded in late-March.
Meanwhile, expressing a cautious optimism over a near-stagnant US labour market, American Staffing Association Chief Executive Officer Richard Wahlquist said, “Temporary and contract jobs are running slightly ahead of where they were the same time a year ago”.