U.S. State Unemployment Rates In February 2015

In February, the unemployment rate decreased in 26 U.S. states, increased in 6 states, and was unchanged in 18 states.

The unemployment rate is higher than a year ago in 4 states: Louisiana (6.7% vs 5.4%), South Carolina (6.6% vs 6.1%), Tennessee (6.6% vs 6.5%), and North Dakota (2.9% vs 2.7%).

Recall that the national jobless rate in February was 5.5%.

State Unemployment Rates

Weekly Initial Jobless Claims At 282k

U.S. initial jobless claims for the week ending March 21 were a seasonally adjusted 282k, down from the prior week’s revised reading of 291k. Not seasonally adjusted, jobless claims for the week were 247k.

Jobless Claims

Individual states that had changes in claims of more than 1k (not seasonally adjusted):

States

The 4-week moving average of initial jobless claims was 297k.

Jobless Claims 4W

The number of unemployment insurance recipients, or continuing claims, for regular state programs was 2.416 million, down from the previous week’s revised reading of 2.422 million.

UI Recipients

The insured unemployment rate, which is the number of unemployment insurance recipients as a share of covered employment, was 1.81%, down from 1.82% the week prior.

Insured Unemployment Rate

89.95% of all U.S. jobs are covered by state unemployment insurance programs.

Covered Employment

Of the 8.705 million Americans currently unemployed, 27.75% receive unemployment insurance.

UI Recipients Share

Jobless claims and the unemployment rate:

Labor Market

CFNAI Contracts To -0.11 In February

The Chicago Fed’s National Activity Index (CFNAI) was a reading of -0.11 in February, down from January’s revised reading of -0.10. The negative figure indicates that the index is below its historical trend. The index’s 3-month moving average is at -0.08.

48 of the 85 individual indicators made positive contributions to the CFNAI in February, while 37 made negative contributions. 46 indicators improved from January to February, while 39 indicators deteriorated. Of the indicators that improved, 10 made negative contributions.

The Production and Income index component registered -0.07 from -0.20 last month. Employment and Hours was +0.11 from +0.16, Personal Consumption and Housing was -0.17 from -0.07, and Sales, Orders, and Inventories was +0.02 from +0.01.

CFNAI Components

CFNAI

Production and Income

Employment and Hours

Consumption and Housing

Sales and Orders

The CFNAI is a weighted average of 85 indicators of national economic activity drawn from four broad categories of data: 1) production and income; 2) employment, unemployment, and hours; 3) personal consumption and housing; and 4) sales, orders, and inventories. Each of these data series measures some aspect of overall macroeconomic activity. 

It is constructed to have an average value of zero and a standard deviation of one. Since economic activity tends toward trend growth rate over time, a positive index reading corresponds to growth above trend and a negative index reading corresponds to growth below trend.

Weekly Initial Jobless Claims At 291k

U.S. initial jobless claims for the week ending March 14 were a seasonally adjusted 291k, down from the prior week’s revised reading of 290k. Not seasonally adjusted, jobless claims for the week were 260k.

Jobless Claims

Individual states that had changes in claims of more than 1k (not seasonally adjusted):

States

The 4-week moving average of initial jobless claims was 305k.

Jobless Claims 4W

The number of unemployment insurance recipients, or continuing claims, for regular state programs was 2.417 million, down from the previous week’s revised reading of 2.428 million.

UI Recipients

The insured unemployment rate, which is the number of unemployment insurance recipients as a share of covered employment, was 1.81%, down from 1.82% the week prior.

Insured Unemployment Rate

89.95% of all U.S. jobs are covered by state unemployment insurance programs.

Covered Employment

Of the 8.705 million Americans currently unemployed, 27.77% receive unemployment insurance.

UI Recipient Share

Jobless claims and the unemployment rate:

Labor Market

Weekly Initial Jobless Claims At 289k

U.S. initial jobless claims for the week ending March 7 were a seasonally adjusted 289k, down from the prior week’s revised reading of 325k. Not seasonally adjusted, jobless claims for the week were 277k.

Jobless Claims

Individual states that had changes in claims of more than 1k (not seasonally adjusted):

States

The 4-week moving average of initial jobless claims was 302k.

Jobless Claims 4W

The number of unemployment insurance recipients, or continuing claims, for regular state programs was 2.418 million, up from the previous week’s revised reading of 2.423 million.

UI Recipients

The insured unemployment rate, which is the number of unemployment insurance recipients as a share of covered employment, was 1.81%, down from 1.82% the week prior.

Insured Unemployment Rate

89.95% of all U.S. jobs are covered by state unemployment insurance programs.

Covered Employment

Of the 8.705 million Americans currently unemployed, 27.78% receive unemployment insurance.

UI Recipient Share

Jobless claims and the unemployment rate:

Labor Market

Stock Market Anticipations And Household Expenditures

Wealth shocks, unemployment shocks and consumption in the wake of the Great Recession:

Data from the 2009 Internet Survey of the Health and Retirement Study show that many U.S. households experienced large capital losses in housing and financial wealth, and that 5% of respondents lost their job during the Great Recession. As a consequence of these shocks, many households reduced substantially their expenditures. For every 10% loss in housing and financial wealth, the estimated drop in household expenditure is about 0.56% and 0.9%, respectively. In addition, those who became unemployed reduced spending by 10%. We also distinguish the effect of perceived transitory and permanent wealth shocks, splitting the sample between households who think that the stock market is likely to recover in a year’s time, and those who do not. In line with the predictions of standard models of intertemporal choice, we find that the latter group adjusted much more than the former its spending in response to financial wealth shocks.