The 12k U.S. initial claims bounce to 272k
The 12k U.S. initial claims bounce to 272k in the fourth week of September reflected a delayed Irma boost, following a 22k drop to 260k (was 259k) in the BLS survey week from 281k (was 282k) in the second week and a Harvey-boosted 298k at the month's start. Displacement of individuals and loss of electrical power last week likely delayed applications, leaving today's rise. State data show claims of 18k in Florida this week after a 10k figure last week, and 2k figures for Puerto Rico in both weeks. Analysts now have a 4-week string of lofty claims readings, before a likely rapid tightening into October. Claims are averaging 273k thus far in September and analysts expect a 270k average when the month is over, versus prior averages of 246k in August, 242k in July, 243k in June, and 241k in May. The 260k September BLS survey week reading followed lower recent BLS survey weak readings of 232k in August, 234k in July, 242k in June, and 233k in May. Analysts trimmed our assumed hurricane-hit to September payrolls to 70k from 100k, leaving a 120k September payroll forecast.