Jobless Claims Rise Modestly, Improving Trend Stalls

Another week, another prior revision down and rise week-over-week in the initial claims data but the print was a modest beat. The smoother 4-week average has now hovered around 345k for 9 weeks as the down-trend of the year-to-date appears to have stalled (for now). Continuing claims dropped back from its July 4th aberration. We worry that with top-line revenues missing significantly in the most recent earnings season, firms will be left once again with only one option to meet Wall Street's EPS demands and wonder if the flat trend in claims for over 2 months now reflects that wait-and-see mode for layoffs (or hirings).



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