As Expected, Jobless Claims ‘Unexpectedly’ Increase
Religion & Liberty Online

As Expected, Jobless Claims ‘Unexpectedly’ Increase

keep-calm-and-expect-the-unexpected-18Today at Bloomberg we find this unexpected news about unemployment:

Applications for U.S. unemployment benefits unexpectedly climbed to a nine-week high, underscoring the difficulty adjusting the data for seasonal variations such as the Easter holiday and spring recess at schools.

Jobless claims rose by 14,000 to 344,000 in the period ended April 26, the highest level since Feb. 22, Labor Department data showed today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for 320,000.

There are two things the media never expects: (1) The Spanish Inquisition and (2) increases in jobless claims. Over the past five years, in 30 of the past 60 months,  the media has considered it “unexpected” when jobless claims increase:

April 2009 – New Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly (AP)

June 2009 – New Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly To 627K, 6.7M Still Unemployed (Huffington Post)

August 2009 – Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly (Washington Post)

October 2009 – New jobless claims rise more than expected(AP)

December 2009 – Jobless claims rise unexpectedly (Christian Science Monitor)

January 2010 – New jobless claims rise unexpectedly (AP)

February 2010 – First-time jobless claims rise unexpectedly(AP)

April 2010 – Initial jobless claims increase unexpectedly (AP)

May 2010 – New jobless claims rise unexpectedly (AP)

June 2010 – “The number of Americans seeking jobless benefits last week unexpectedly rose to a one-month high, indicating firings are staying elevated even as the U.S. economy grows.” (Bloomberg)

July 2010 – Weekly jobless claims rise unexpectedly (The Hill)

August 2010 – Stocks drop as jobless claims rise unexpectedly (AP)

September 2010 – New Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly (AP)

October 2010 – US initial weekly jobless claims rise unexpectedly (International Business Times)

January 2011 – “U.S. jobless claims jumped unexpectedly last week to their highest level since October, suggesting the labor market is still in a rut despite signs of improvement in the economy.” (Reuters)

February 2011 – First-time jobless claims rise unexpectedly (AP)

April 2011 – Initial Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly (Reuters)

May 2011 – Jobless Claims Rise Unexpectedly (Bloomberg News)

June 2011 – Jobless claims unexpectedly rise (Reuters)

September 2011 – Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Rise To 428,000 As Labor Market Stalls (Reuters)

December 2011 – Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Rise Above 400,000 (AP)

April 2012 – Jobless claims unexpectedly rise last week (Reuters)

June 2012 – US jobless claims unexpectedly rise (Reuters)

August 2012 – Weekly Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Rise (Reuters)

April 2013 – New Jobless Claims Climb Unexpectedly to a 4-Month High (Reuters)

May 2013 – Jobless claims rise unexpectedly, but not by much (Reuters)

June 2013 – “The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment aid unexpectedly fell last week, . . .” (Reuters)

July 2013 – Jobless Claims Unexpectedly Rise (Reuters)

December 2013 – Jobless claims unexpectedly jump to highest level since March (L.A. Times)

When an event occurs approximately 50 percent of the time, maybe we should start expecting it.

Related: Explainer: What You Should Know About the Jobs Report

Joe Carter

Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).