A Flat Employment Report

The green shoots in the labor market are also starting to wither.

The four week moving average of initial claims jumped by 6,000 to 630,500. The one week data showed an increase of 32,000 to 637,000. As always, concentrate on the four week number.

Blame for the increase is being laid at the doorstep of Chrysler. As they wind their way through bankruptcy, they have shut down production and laid off some 27,000 employees. Some argue that these workers should be excluded from the numbers as this is temporary, others point out that not all of these workers are likely to be recalled. I look it as one of those “how many angels can dance on the head of a pin” type arguments and say just count ‘em.

The bottom line is that unemployment is not obviously getting worse, but it is also not getting better.

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About Tom Lindmark 401 Articles

I’m not sure that credentials mean much when it comes to writing about things but people seem to want to see them, so briefly here are mine. I have an undergraduate degree in economics from an undistinguished Midwestern university and masters in international business from an equally undistinguished Southwestern University. I spent a number of years working for large banks lending to lots of different industries. For the past few years, I’ve been engaged in real estate finance – primarily for commercial projects. Like a lot of other finance guys, I’m looking for a job at this point in time.

Given all of that, I suggest that you take what I write with the appropriate grain of salt. I try and figure out what’s behind the news but suspect that I’m often delusional. Nevertheless, I keep throwing things out there and occasionally it sticks. I do read the comments that readers leave and to the extent I can reply to them. I also reply to all emails so feel free to contact me if you want to discuss something at more length. Oh, I also have a very thick skin, so if you disagree feel free to say so.

Enjoy what I write and let me know when I’m off base – I probably won’t agree with you but don’t be shy.

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