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July 8, 2021 Reading Time: 2 minutes

Initial claims for regular state unemployment insurance totaled 373,000 for the week ending July 3, a rise of 2,000 from the previous week’s tally of 371,000 (see first chart). Despite the increase, the current result is the fourth week in the last six that initial claims were below 400,000.

The four-week average fell 250 to 394,500, the 12th decline in the past 13 weeks and the 20th drop over the last 22 weeks. The four-week average for initial claims came in below 400,000 for the fourth consecutive week but the pace of decline has slowed to a trickle. Initial claims are likely to continue trending lower as the economy fully reopens and activity levels continue to rise.

The number of ongoing claims for state unemployment programs totaled 3.262 million for the week ending June 19th, a rise of 54,410 from the prior week. The latest reading is the 13th consecutive week below 4 million (see second chart).

Continuing claims in all federal programs totaled 10.947 million for the week ending June 19th, a decrease of 504,052. The latest result is the sixth consecutive week that Federal continuing claims have been below the 12 to 16 million range (see second chart).

The trends in Federal and state continuing claims puts the total number of people claiming benefits in all unemployment programs, including all emergency programs, at 14.209 million for the week ended June 19th, down 449,642 from the prior week. This is the eighth consecutive decline and eighth consecutive week below 16 million (see second chart).

Robert Hughes

Bob Hughes

Robert Hughes joined AIER in 2013 following more than 25 years in economic and financial markets research on Wall Street. Bob was formerly the head of Global Equity Strategy for Brown Brothers Harriman, where he developed equity investment strategy combining top-down macro analysis with bottom-up fundamentals.

Prior to BBH, Bob was a Senior Equity Strategist for State Street Global Markets, Senior Economic Strategist with Prudential Equity Group and Senior Economist and Financial Markets Analyst for Citicorp Investment Services. Bob has a MA in economics from Fordham University and a BS in business from Lehigh University.

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