U.S. weekly jobless claims drop to 225,000
(Kitco News) The initial weekly jobless decreased by 16,000 to 225,000 in the week to Saturday, surprising the markets with a slightly better employment situation than expected.
Economists’ consensus calls projected for initial claims to come in at 235,000 following the previous week’s revised level of 241,000.
The four-week moving average for new claims – often viewed as a more reliable measure of the labor market since it flattens week-to-week volatility – increased to 228,750. The previous week’s four-week moving average was revised up to 227,000, the U.S. Labor Department said on Thursday.
Continuing jobless claims, which represent the number of people already receiving benefits, were at 1,608,000 during the week ending November 19, an increase of 57,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level of 1,551,000.
The four-week moving average rose to 1,538,750, an increase of 30,250. And the previous week’s four-week moving average was revised down to 1,508,500.
Traders watch the jobless claims data very closely to gauge its impact on the Federal Reserve’s employment side of the monetary policy mandate.
Gold remained at daily highs after the data release as the precious metal continued to rally following Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s dovish comments on Wednesday. February Comex gold futures were last trading at $1,803.30, up 2.47% on the day.