Weekly jobless claims have fallen yet again, marking a new low in weekly claims in the United States — and hitting a 14-month low in the process. While jobless claims have declined for four straight weeks now, this latest report is much lower than expected, leaving many to continue to predict that fewer layoffs will happen as the economy continues to reopen.
Fewer than 500,000 Americans filed new jobless claims for the week that ended on May 22nd. This latest week recorded about 406,000 claims, falling 38,000 from the week before. For three straight weeks now, fewer than 500,000 United States citizens have filed new jobless claims.
This is likely for many reasons. As more Americans become vaccinated — currently, about half of all adults are vaccinated in the United States — more people are encouraged to go out and work. The CDC has already expressed that fully vaccinated individuals do not have to wear masks indoors or outdoors and do not have to socially distance themselves. This is expected to help grow the economy as more people go out and spend at businesses, some for the first time in over a year since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
As more business is conducted, many analysts expect that more workers will rejoin the workforce. This should also signal that fewer people will be laid off — and therefore the weekly jobless claims will continue to fall with each new week. As a result, this will almost certainly help the economy.
Of course, workers have to actually reenter the workforce for this to happen, which has not necessarily happened as quickly as some economists initially thought. The amount of employment growth has increased steadily, though not as much as many first anticipated at the beginning of this year. However, employment growth has increased in the last month or so as more workers begin to reenter the workforce.
While this latest report signals that much fewer people are filing jobless claims every week, the amount of jobless claims in a week is still significantly higher than it normally is in a consistent, steady economy. For example, many economists state that jobless claims should be at about 200,000 people a week for consistency. Last week was at 406,000, signaling that there is still quite a bit to go before everything looks to even out as the economy grows.
This latest report of fewer jobless claims reveals that the decrease was mainly led by Washington, New Jersey, and Florida. However, there is still a labor shortage in most states in America, as employers in various industries experience a mass increase of demand, yet don’t have the accurate number of workers to help meet this increase of business. Regardless, the new jobless claims are still positive for America and the whole economy. Economists have high hopes that the number of claims will decrease with each new week.
As a result of the fewer jobless claims, Wall Street’s main indexes also rose.