Jobless claims down again this week, both nationally and here in Washington

While inflation is up, unemployment claims continue to drop. The Seattle Times reports,

New jobless claims in Washington rose slightly last week, but remain well below pre-pandemic levels as the state economy continues its recovery from layoffs due to COVID-19 and harsh winter weather.

Washingtonians filed 4,863 new, or “initial,” claims for jobless benefits in the week ending Saturday, according to data posted Thursday by the state Employment Security Department. That’s up less than half a percent from the prior week, and is around 40% below the same week in 2020, before the pandemic had begun causing major job losses. 

The U.S. Department of Labor also reported another week of declining new claims.

In the week ending February 5, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 223,000, a decrease of 16,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The previous week’s level was revised up by 1,000 from 238,000 to 239,000. The 4-week moving average was 253,250, a decrease of 2,000 from the previous week’s revised average. The previous week’s average was revised up by 250 from 255,000 to 255,250.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 1.2 percent for the week ending January 29, unchanged from the previous week’s unrevised rate.

That’s good news.