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The 18k U.S. initial claims bounce to a still-lean 251k

The 18k U.S. initial claims bounce to a still-lean 251k in the third week of November largely reversed the 21k plunge to a 43-year low of 233k (was 235k) in the BLS survey week, as claims oscillate around remarkably tight levels as analysts enter the volatile holiday period that extends through the MLK weekend in January. Claims are averaging just 245k thus far in November, versus prior averages of 257k in October, 254k in September, 262k in August and 260k in July. The 233k BLS survey week reading lies well below recent BLS readings of 261k in October, 251k in September, 262k in August, and 252k in July. Analysts boosted our November nonfarm payroll rise to 190k from 170k, versus a 161k October rise and a 181k average increase thus far in 2016, due to the remarkably tight claims path alongside the climb in producer sentiment, as factories benefit from rising oil prices and a diminishing inventory headwind, alongside the bounce in confidence.


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