Initial Claims Drop To 5-Year 'Old Normal' Lows On Seasonal Shenanigans

Tyler Durden's picture

Initial jobless claims saw their biggest beat in almost 4 years to the lowest absolute (seasonally adjusted level) in almost 5 years. The market's initial reaction was a shrug (is good bad now that the Fed is pinned to jobs or is the market getting wise in the ways of seasonal-adjustment shenanigans?) but now it appears to be buying the new 'old' normal (+6 points). In the unadjusted data, things look very different - with a lag, New York (37,189), Georgia (15,354), and North Carolina (13,606) saw major rises in initial claims with only Michigan (-12,536) seeing a decent drop in claims - as we note that non-seasonally-adjusted claims rose notably less than in the prior 4 years, and assuming seasonal-adjustments are triggered from those, this will reflect very rosily on today's seasonal adjustment. With Claims back to 'normal', what will the Fed do?

Initial Claims SA - best since Feb 2008 (back to normal)!!


Initial Claims NSA - lower seasonals suggest


As Deutsche's Joe Lavorgna notes: "We are hesitant to read too much into this because claims are very volatile on a week to week basis, and the seasonal factors tend to be large this time of year."

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spastic_colon's picture

the fix is's 1600 ES anyday short opportunity in 2016....crappy bank earnings and ES +8 as we follow europe into the only took them 15 trillion and 6 years to create the worlds most expensive short ban

GetZeeGold's picture



Hey.....gotta stick with what works......just sayin.

FL_Conservative's picture GOOD is GOOD today, but BAD is GOOD when that is the card that is laid down, which I'm sure will be next Thursday.

mckee's picture

Ok... so we're saved? Or fucked?


CPL's picture

That's called an ugly chart.  Something nobody wants to see.  

WhiteNight123129's picture

Depends on what you own.


kensdad's picture

The beauty of algos (for the gov't & wall street) is that they are programmed to accept the crap statistics at face value and to trade them as if there is no possibility that they are inaccurate.

pods's picture

Just another Festivus miracle!


LongSoupLine's picture

Bull fucking shit.

Prove it....end SNAP and QE.

fuck you.

Clam McCain's picture

time for a gold take down...opps its already happened

kralizec's picture

Awesome, another 8:30 buying window.

Racer's picture

Fake fake and more fakery

schatzi's picture

No, it's not fake. It's seasonally adjusted. The trend remains positive. Participation rates however put everything in perspective. With less people participating, less people can claim unemployment. All in all job market is still depressed and stagnant.

bnbdnb's picture

Why should congress do anything then? Looks like the less they do, the more the unemployment rate and claims fall....

Yen Cross's picture

 "The Land of The Lost"/ { prepositional phrases }

IamtheREALmario's picture

I get that ...

No one trusts that the markets are free market. We all believe that prices are managed/rigged for the benefit of the the banks. It is assumed that the government lies at all times. Under those circumstances, nothing moves markets except those who control price.

Trust? Fergedaboudit!

We live in the land of no credibility.

GetZeeGold's picture



Good thing our system is faith based.

kralizec's picture

With Claims back to 'normal', what will the Fed do?


cosmictrainwreck's picture

aha! wonder if anybody even remembers BB claiming he'd ease off if......... What a cluster-fuck. Can't wait to see....

jubber's picture

have to love the way the DAX spiked 60 points just before that figure came out!

james larson's picture

The only real "first" I see is current year worse than last year with the reality figures.  Are people that stupid they rely on the hocus pocus figure thats subject to the magicians at BLS?  How accurate is this?


The number of Americans seeking unemployment aid fell to a five-year low last week, a hopeful sign the job market is healing, while housing starts surged last month.


Maybe it should be added in BLS comments that 200,000 actual pink slips dont really exist

Yen Cross's picture

 Have fun (peeps). I'm messing with these micro "Asian Currencies"

mayhem_korner's picture



Ben has trapped himself by pinning to the UE rate.  Even if it is manipulated down to 6.5%, he will not be able to stop the printing presses because there will be no one to buy U.S. sovereign debt.  Maybe he's hoping Congress will actually hold on the debt ceiling and get him off the hook by defaulting...

LawsofPhysics's picture

I have thought this as well, yet look at yields.  Unfucking believable.  The rest of the world must really be just that stupid.  I am simply amazed that the BRICs are fine with the Fed buying 100% of the debt and they still accept the dollar for payment.  Simply fucking amazing.

Confundido's picture

Yeah, but I don't care. All what matters is that the algos torch blow gold everytime these stats come out. The can will be kicked forever and gold bugs will lose their shirts.

LawsofPhysics's picture

The world is about to find out that when it comes to all commodities, there is a big difference between paper and physical.

Hedge accordingly.

fonzannoon's picture

Look at cude Laws...looks like they are not so happy with dollars. I wonder how high it goes.

Confundido's picture

I doubt it. Keep wishing. They have the upper hand.

LawsofPhysics's picture

History is very clear on where this goes.  Look at crude right now (The Fed can beat down gold or crude, but no longer both- a big tell regarding what the world thinks of the dollar).  All eCONomies are local in the end, especially when supply lines crack (and they always do).  All you can do is hedge accordingly.

forwardho's picture

Laws, always appreciate your well composed thoughts. It seems "about to" has been coming for some time.

Can an infinite amount of fiat, infinitely distort reality?

LawsofPhysics's picture

Yes, until the supply lines break, and people are marched into re-education camps.  History is very clear on this.

forwardho's picture

Same book, same page.

It's not rhyming, The same book is being used.

Over and over.

james larson's picture

Look how 525,000 unadjusted was reported last year


01/14/2012 525,422 144.2 364,000 4,069,651


BLS new math

Tsar Pointless's picture

Actually, it's DOL new math.

Department of Liars.

Hohum's picture

james larson,

Exactly right. About 30K down year over year seasonally adjusted.  30k UP year over year unadjusted.  Too funny.

voltaic's picture

Lower claims and a deteriorating employment picture? I know it's only Gallup, but it's contradictory of claims. Strange days, indeed.


The U.S. Payroll to Population employment rate (P2P), as measured by Gallup, deteriorated steadily in early January. P2P fell to 43.7% on Jan. 15, based on a 30-day rolling average, from 44.1% for the 30 days ending Jan. 3, the first reading for 2013. The P2P rate is also lower compared with the same time last year, when it was in the low 44% range.

Gallup's year-over-year P2P suggests that the current worsening of job conditions involves more than seasonal factors. Whether that will continue or intensify during the remainder of the month remains to be seen.

JeffB's picture

More people just retiring or going on disability?

Or just more government stat shenanigans?



AlphaHunter001's picture


I prefer ADP monthly data anyway which is actual employment for over 23 million people and it's showing a strong rebound lately

mayhem_korner's picture



ADP doesn't distinguish part-time jobs from full-time jobs nor does it distinguish burger-flippers from architects.

MFLTucson's picture

Sure, with Christmas over and all retail workers getting their walking papers, jobless claims are down. Where in the fuck does this charade end? I know no one who believes anything that comes out of this government, this is so fucked up that it’s impossible to invest in anything except the impeachment movement by Alex Jones.

rayban's picture

The ramp started approx. 10 minutes before the release (best shown by the Dax chart). Stop hunting on top of an unreal claims figure the day before expiration and you get the SP opening today at multi-year highs above resistance. Who believes in a coincidence?

azzhatter's picture

I'm just so happy everything is fixed. It's been a long 5 years

Tabarnaque's picture

If the actice population is shrinking then it is logic to see the initial claims trending lower... Just saying. But that doesn't say much about all those left outside the system. Feel like there's an elephant in the room? 

economists_do_it_with_models's picture

Reminds me of the scene from "The Perfect Storm" when they briefly exit the storm and make it to sunny skies...yet just as quick, the darkness overtakes them again.

Initial claims are back to normal.  Food stamps too, right?  Not even close.  Guess they forgot to "doctor" the later data set.  OOPS.

Net profit margins -- the ultimate bubble that's about to burst.

There are countless ways things can go wrong in a big way -- China, Europe, U.S. default, etc, etc.  To keep the fantasy/delusion going, they need to be nearly 100% perfect.  What are the odds that the *clowns* in power are up to the task?  The debt expansion the last few years provides the answer -- it's in the TRILLIONS.


forwardho's picture

Your comment brings to mind a circus act I saw as a child.

A man was spinning plate on a stick.

More plates and sticks were added. (to an amazing hight indeed)

Finally, first one then all came crashing down.

It was neat while it lasted.

Silverhog's picture

CNBC says morning numbers are two great boosters for the Challenger.. I mean Recovery.