U.S. unemployment claims dip for the week ended August 29

September 3, 2020

The seasonally adjusted initial claims, advance estimate, fell to 881,000, a decrease of 130,000 for the week ending August 29 from the prior week’s revised level, according to the U.S. Department of Labour (DOL). The prior week’s level was revised to 1,011,000 from 1,006,000 up by 5,000. In comparison to the previous week’s average, the 4-week moving average was 991,750, a decline of 77,500. Moreover, the preceding week’s average was revised up by 1,250 from 1,068,000 to 1,069,250.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate stood at 9.1% for the week ending August 22, a 0.8 percentage point decline from the prior week’s unrevised rate.  Moreover, DOL stated that, “advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending August 22 was 13,254,000, a decrease of 1,238,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The previous week’s level was revised down by 43,000 from 14,535,000 to 14,492,000.” Relative to last week’s revised average, the 4-week moving average decreased by 709,000 to 14,496,250. Notably, there was a downward revision in the preceding week’s average by 10,500 from 15,215,750 to 15,205,250.



Based on the unadjusted advance estimate, there were 833,352 actual initial claims under state programs in the week ending August 29, an increase of 7,591 (or 0.9%) from the previous week. Furthermore, for the week ending August 29, 51 states observed 759,482 initial claims for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.

During the week ending August 22, the advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate stood at 9.0%, a 0.5 percentage point decrease relative to the previous week. The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs fell by 764,713 (or -5.5%) to 13,104,366 from a week earlier.

A total of 29,224,546 persons claimed benefits in all programs for the week ended August 15, an increase of 2,195,835 compared to the prior week.

Extended Benefits, during the week ending August 15, were accessible in the following 52 states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, the Virgin Islands, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

For the week ending the 22th of August, 1,051 former Federal civilian employees claimed for UI benefits, a decline of 94 relative to the previous week, whereas 802 newly discharged veterans (-228) claimed for benefits.

However, for the week ending the 15th of August, 14,165 former Federal civilian employees claimed for UI benefits, an increase of 197 relative to the previous week, whereas 13,684 newly discharged veterans (+118) claimed for benefits.

DOL noted that, “during the week ending Aug 15, 49 states reported 13,570,327 individuals claiming Pandemic Unemployment Assistance benefits and 49 states reported 1,393,314 individuals claiming Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits.”

In the week ending August 15, Hawaii observed the highest insured unemployment rates of 18.6% followed by Nevada (16.4), California (16.3), Puerto Rico (16.1), New York (15.2), Connecticut (14.0), Louisiana (13.3), Georgia (12.6), the Virgin Islands (11.8), District of Columbia (11.7), and Massachusetts (11.7).

The state that experienced the highest increases in initial claims for the week ending August 22 were in California (+6,562), Illinois (+3,856), Pennsylvania (+1,926), Kansas (+1,061), and Rhode Island (+503), while the largest decreases were in Florida (-21,127), Texas (-9,248), New Jersey (-5,235), Virginia (-3,715), and North Carolina (-3,708).


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