US initial claims for unemployment insurance fell 30,000 in latest week to 339,000, lowest since February 2008; four-week average fell 11,500 to 364,000

WASHINGTON , October 11, 2012 (press release) – In the week ending October 6, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 339,000, a decrease of 30,000 from the previous week's revised figure of 369,000. The 4-week moving average was 364,000, a decrease of 11,500 from the previous week's revised average of 375,500.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.6 percent for the week ending September 29, unchanged from the prior week's unrevised rate. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending September 29 was 3,273,000, a decrease of 15,000 from the preceding week's revised level of 3,288,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,279,250, a decrease of 7,750 from the preceding week's revised average of 3,287,000.

UNADJUSTED DATA

The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 327,063 in the week ending October 6, an increase of 25,990 from the previous week. There were 405,906 initial claims in the comparable week in 2011.

The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.2 percent during the week ending September 29, unchanged from the prior week's unrevised rate. The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 2,778,396, a decrease of 42,837 from the preceding week. A year earlier, the rate was 2.5 percent and the volume was 3,113,245.

The total number of people claiming benefits in all programs for the week ending September 22 was 5,044,649, a decrease of 43,970 from the previous week. There were 6,819,938 persons claiming benefits in all programs in the comparable week in 2011.

Extended Benefits were only available in New York during the week ending September 22.

Initial claims for UI benefits by former Federal civilian employees totaled 1,545 in the week ending September 29, an increase of 230 from the prior week. There were 2,514 initial claims by newly discharged veterans, an increase of 4 from the preceding week.

There were 17,283 former Federal civilian employees claiming UI benefits for the week ending September 22, an increase of 704 from the previous week. Newly discharged veterans claiming benefits totaled 38,511, a decrease of 18 from the prior week.

States reported 2,106,072 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending September 22, a decrease of 36,977 from the prior week. There were 3,016,035 persons claiming EUC in the comparable week in 2011. EUC weekly claims include first, second, third, and fourth tier activity.

The highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending September 22 were in Puerto Rico (3.9), Alaska (3.7), Virgin Islands (3.7), Pennsylvania (3.2), New Jersey (3.1), California (3.1), Connecticut (2.9), Nevada (2.7), and Oregon (2.7).

The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending September 29 were in New York (+2,764), California (+2,069), North Carolina (+1,217), Pennsylvania (+989), and Arkansas (+538), while the largest decreases were in Mississippi (-3,393), Michigan (-2,639), Florida (-1,972), Ohio (-1,723), and Oregon (-1,135).

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