The U.S. Labor Department released its latest weekly U.S. jobless claims report on Thursday, revealing that claims for state unemployment benefits fell by 12,000 to a seasonally adjusted 237,000 claims in the week ending June 8. This indicates a strengthening U.S. labor market.
Although the actual figures outperformed Reuters’ estimate of 250,000 claims for the week, it is important to note that the U.S. Independence Day fell on Tuesday, thereby distorting the data.
While the Federal Reserve stated on Wednesday that the U.S. labor force remains healthy, the market has slowed down as the impact of the Fed’s 500 basis points in interest rate hikes has begun to take hold. The labor market is facing worker shortages in health care, hospitality, and transportation as well as several high-skilled positions.
Job growth in June slowed to its lowest rate in two and a half years. While jobless claims also remain low, this could be a result of some laid-off workers being unemployed for short periods of time.