In each Economic Update, the Research staff analyzes recently released economic indicators and addresses what these indicators mean for REALTORS® and their clients. Today’s update discusses jobless claims.
- Initial claims for unemployment insurance for the week ending December 1 continued to drop and return to the normal level prior to Hurricane Sandy. Initial claims dropped by 25,000 claims to 370,000.
- Meanwhile, as of November 24, there were 3.25 million filing continued claims, which represent people who have been unemployed for two weeks or more continuously. This is down from about 3.7 million from last year’s level and from the peak of 6.5 million.
- The official unemployment rate and job figures for November will be released tomorrow, 12/7. But based on the job claims data, there appear to be no drastic gains or losses in the job market. At the current pace, NAR expects the unemployment rate to have kept steady at 7.9 percent and a net payroll job creation of 1.7 million for year. Absent a fiscal cliff, NAR projects a stronger job picture next year of 2.2 million net new payroll jobs. But should the fiscal cliff occur then a fresh recession is guaranteed, with at least one million net job losses in 2013.