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U.S. Jobless Claims Surge to Three-Month High on Omicron Impact

Economic IndicatorsJan 20, 2022 08:45AM ET
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© Bloomberg. A worker assembles furniture at a wood shop in Auburn, Kentucky. Photographer: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) -- Applications for U.S. state unemployment insurance surged last week to a three-month high, suggesting that the omicron variant is having a bigger impact on the labor market.

Initial unemployment claims increased by 55,000 to 286,000 in the week ended Jan. 15, Labor Department data showed Thursday. The figure exceeded all estimates in a Bloomberg survey of economists. The report reflects the reference week for January employment data due early next month.

Continuing claims for state benefits rose to 1.64 million in the week ended Jan. 8.

The increase in applications may point to employers laying off staff during the most recent surge in Covid cases. Even so, the fallout should be short-lived as companies are desperate to retain and attract talent amid ongoing labor shortages.

Claims figures have been choppy in the last few weeks, reflecting challenges adjusting for seasonal effects during the holiday period.

In fact, claims fell 83,418 to 337,417 last week on an unadjusted basis. New York, Missouri and Texas were states with the biggest decreases in unadjusted claims. California registered the largest increase in applications.

©2022 Bloomberg L.P.

U.S. Jobless Claims Surge to Three-Month High on Omicron Impact
 

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Comments (16)
ebrahim deaf
ebrahim deaf Jan 20, 2022 11:02AM ET
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l am in yemen
ebrahim deaf
ebrahim deaf Jan 20, 2022 11:02AM ET
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hello you
ebrahim deaf
ebrahim deaf Jan 20, 2022 11:02AM ET
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who are you
Sidney Glover
Sidney Glover Jan 20, 2022 10:54AM ET
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previous week unemployment numbers were 337k. this week is 286k? really I would consider a lower number even for US education system. this is a bogus story for bogus numbers. the Nigerian in the labor department is making these numbers up. even with the made up numbers 286k is less than 337k. give me a break
Bill Riley
Bill Riley Jan 20, 2022 9:48AM ET
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Republicans are fleeing the state of California, who will pay the taxes.
Mi Dz
Mi Dz Jan 20, 2022 9:35AM ET
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Could the Great Resignation be getting ahead of itself?
Jack Peterson
Jack Peterson Jan 20, 2022 9:30AM ET
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California is such a nanny state… give them all a binky along with the free mask and free covid test..
Chad RicherThanYou
Chad RicherThanYou Jan 20, 2022 9:27AM ET
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China is the new world superpower
Mark McMillan
Mark McMillan Jan 20, 2022 9:06AM ET
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when oil is at another high yet oil stocks drop for 2 days. something isn't adding up. Major market disruption look to be coming.
ben sc
ben sc Jan 20, 2022 9:06AM ET
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Biden creating fiasco with Russia is driving oil higher while supply remains tight. Green policies restricting and discouraging US producers from drilling will also h keep oil above $80
Puk Pups
Puk Pups Jan 20, 2022 9:05AM ET
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In 2019, around 157.54 million people were employed in the United States.    50 k is 0.03 %  where is problem  ?  In Russia 50% people do not have job  . They are happy having  $200.00 per month  ! There is a huge problem that is why Mr Putin making noise to avoid revolution
TheEnd IsNigh
TheEnd IsNigh Jan 20, 2022 9:01AM ET
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The great thing about human beings is that they can always figure out a scapegoat.....I mean an excuse.....for their failures. Policy makers never make mistakes. Ever. They are infallible.
Ian Duany
Ian Duany Jan 20, 2022 8:57AM ET
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Higher unemployment claims doesnt necessarily means that there were more layoffs. It could also mean that more people is coming to the labor force trying to find a job. Remember the labor participation rate is pretty well under pre-pandemic levels
ben sc
ben sc Jan 20, 2022 8:57AM ET
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you can't file a claim unless you were fired. this is likely a lot of seasonal rifs
 
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