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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Unemployment Benefits Claims Drop To Their Lowest Levels Since August 2008

NEW YORK - JUNE 24:  A job seeker looks over t...Image by Getty Images via @daylife
Unemployment claims fall to their lowest
levels since August 2008
Claims in the number of individuals filing for unemployment benefits fell to its’ lowest level since August 2008. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on November 24th the weekly unemployment benefits claims dropped by 34,000 to a seasonal adjusted rate of 407,000, during the week ending November 20thThis number beat Wall Street analysts’ expectations, who were expecting a small drop in jobless benefits claims. 

Still a question is whether new claims for benefits will remain low for the weeks ahead. Particularly, will claims stay low as result of jobless individuals obtaining employment or from potential claimants falling off the rolls, due to Congress lack of passing the unemployment extension, by the current bill expiration date of November 30th.

Initial claims for jobless supplemental benefits have managed to fall for four of the last six weeks. The four-week average, which is known as the less volatile measure, dropped also, the third straight week to 436,000, which is the lowest since August 2008.

Some economists are beginning to believe that the continue drop in claims are steps in the right direction.

 "I think the jobless claim numbers were very good. The level is getting close to breaking the 400,000 barrier," John Silvia, Wells Fargo chief economist, told CNN. "For the 80% of America that is participating in this recovery, it's time to take out the champagne and have a very nice holiday, because things are improving."

Another important figure to show improvement in the employment hiring pictures is 425,000; which is where applications for jobless aid need to stay for several weeks as signal that hiring is accelerating, economists say.

For all of the inspiriting news out of BLS, the Federal Reserve officials on November 23rd offered tempered measures for the job market going forward. The central bank said the unemployment rate will likely remain high between 8.9 percent - 9.1 percent in 2011. 

Also, nearly 4.7 million people received extended benefits during the week ending November 6th but the figure was decreased, by more than 260,000 from the previous week.

What are your thoughts on this article? Does the unemployment claims drop give you hope on returning back to a full-time employment opportunity in the near future? Feel free to comment on this story, below!
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