6 Things Jobless Claims Tell Us About the State of the Real Economy

Persistent unemployment and fears of further layoffs are the real economic counterpoint to the financial market’s unbridled enthusiasm.

Jun 18, 2020 at 7:00 p.m. UTCUpdated Sep 14, 2021 at 8:53 a.m. UTC
Jun 18, 2020 at 7:00 p.m. UTCUpdated Sep 14, 2021 at 8:53 a.m. UTC

Persistent unemployment and fears of further layoffs are the real economic counterpoint to the financial market’s unbridled enthusiasm.

For more episodes and free early access before our regular 3 p.m. Eastern time releases, subscribe with Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocketcasts, Google Podcasts, Castbox, Stitcher, RadioPublica, iHeartRadio or RSS.

This episode is sponsored by Bitstamp and Ciphertrace.

Today on the Brief:

  • Powell says private companies shouldn’t be involved in Central Bank Digital Currencies
  • According to former NSA head John Bolton, Trump told Mnuchin to go after Bitcoin
  • Interest around Compound driving speculation around a DeFi-driven bull run 

Our main topic:

This week’s U.S. jobless report brought bad news. Whereas economists had expected new claims to fall to 1.29 million from 1.57 million the week before, claims fell just 58,000 to 1.51 million. 

Continuing claims fared even worse. Economists predicted these claims would fall 600,000+ to 19.9 million. Instead, they fell a tenth of that - 62,000 - to leave total continuing claims at 20.5 million.

In this episode, NLW breaks down what we can learn from these numbers when they’re combined with the previously released May jobs report. 

  • Mixed signals confusing analysis 
  • Economic pain not (only) a short-term shock
  • Demand destruction an open question
  • White-collar jobs may be next
  • Short-term pain has long-term effects (see: 106 million loans in relief)
  • There is a relationship between unemployment and the markets

For more episodes and free early access before our regular 3 p.m. Eastern time releases, subscribe with Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pocketcasts, Google Podcasts, Castbox, Stitcher, RadioPublica, iHeartRadio or RSS.

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