Initial jobless claims rose 38,000 in the week ended Jan. 26, the most since Nov. 10, to 368,000, the Labor Department reported today in Washington. Economists forecast 350,000 filings, according to the Bloomberg survey median. The increase followed a combined 45,000 drop in the prior two weeks.At best, what this shows is stagnation in the job market, especially when coupled with the following:
The number of people who continue to collect jobless benefits climbed by 22,000 to 3.2 million in the week ended Jan. 19. The continuing claims figure does not include workers receiving extended benefits from the federal government.As to the GDP:
Those who’ve exhausted their traditional benefits and now are collecting emergency and extended payments jumped by about 418,000 to 2.11 million in the week ended Jan. 12.
The U.S. economy posted a decline of 0.1% at an annual rate last quarter, shocking experts although there was an expectation that growth would be lower than the 3.1% gain in the third quarter, the government said Wednesday.Experts are quick to point to point out "factors" in this case, aren't they? But they're much less likely to do this when there's supposed growth. Then, the growth is simply taken as a given, as it was in the previous--the third--quarter of 2012. Look at this chart from Zerohedge:
It's the first decline in GDP since a -0.3% decline in 2009's third quarter. A survey of economists by Bloomberg had expected growth of 1% in the fourth quarter, held back by a plunge in defense spending and business inventories along with the impact of Superstorm Sandy, among other factors.
Those lamenting and blaming the drop in government expenditures for the Q4 GDP numbers ignore some things: