The 5k initial claims bounce to 215k
The 5k initial claims bounce to 215k in the week after hurricane Michael reverses the 5k drop to 210k in the BLS survey week, leaving a post-hurricane bounce that undershoots the 13k pop after hurricane Florence. The double-hurricanes have left claims oscillating above the prior string of 49-year lows, of 202k in the September BLS survey week, 204k in the week before that, and 205k at the start of September. The NSA state data for claims revealed gains of 4k in Florida and 3k in Georgia, after 1k drops for both in the week of hurricane Michael. In the week after hurricane Florence, analysts saw an 8k rise in North Carolina and a 2k rise in South Carolina. Claims are averaging 213k thus far in October, following averages of just 207k in September, 211k in August and 215k in July. The 210k October BLS survey week reading exceeded the 202k September figure, versus prior BLS survey week readings of the same 210k in August and a similar 208k in July. Continuing claims fell 5k to a new cycle-low of 1,636k in the BLS survey week, while the insured jobless rate also fell to a new cycle-low, of just 1.1%. Our 200k October nonfarm payroll estimate reflects a hit from Michael but an expected post-Florence bounce, with swings pegged at about 50k, following a hurricane-depressed 134k figure in September.