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Tag Archives: Unemployment

Beige Book: Economy Expanded ‘Modestly’ in September


The nation's economy generally expanded modestly from mid-August until the end of September, the Federal Reserve said in its periodic Beige Book report issued Wednesday. The report, the last Beige Book to be issued prior to Election Day, painted a mixed regional picture, with a leveling off of economic activity in New York and a slowing in the pace of growth in Kansas City. Meanwhile, the remaining 10 federal reserve districts reported that "growth continued at a modest pace."

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Markets, Commentators React to Unemployment Drop

Experts across the country wasted no time in responding to Friday's unemployment report, and the responses ranged from celebration to healthy skepticism. As pundits waged a war over the significance of the report, Capital Economics focused its view less on politics and more on its own breakdown of the data, noting that while the growth was modest, the overall report was encouraging. Wall Street also reacted, with banks and construction firms seeing stock upticks.

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Unemployment Slips Below 8% for First Time Since 2009

The nation's unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent in September--the lowest level since January 2009--as the economy added a below-average 114,000 jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Friday. The 0.3 percentage point improvement in the unemployment rate is the largest since January 2011, when the unemployment rate dropped from 9.4 percent to 9.1 percent.

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First-Time Unemployment Claims Inch Up, Stop Short of Expectations


First-time claims for unemployment insurance edged up by 4,000 to 367,000 for the week ended September 29, the Labor Department reported Thursday. The previous week's report was revised upward to 363,000 first time claims from the originally reported 359,000. Although initial claims appear to have plateaued (occasional weather-related spikes notwithstanding) first time claims fell in only five weeks during the third quarter, with a wide range: As high as 388,000 in the week following the July 4 holiday week and 385,000 in each of the two weeks following Hurricane Isaac, but as low as 352,000 when the quarter began.

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Homeownership Rally in Missouri Draws Concerned Citizens

More than 800 homeowners from across Missouri, Kansas, and Nebraska, came together with local business leaders, real estate professionals, politicians, and civil rights leaders this week in support of homeownership. The rally took place in Independence, Missouri, and is one of nine events organized by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) to urge elected officials to back homeownership initiatives.

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First-Time Unemployment Claims Lower than Expected

Shaking off the effects of Hurricane Isaac, first-time claims for unemployment insurance fell 26,000 to 359,000 for the week ended September 22, according to findings from the Labor Department. Falling far below market expectations, the report followed revisions to the previous week's survey, which was adjusted upward to 385,000 first-time claims off of the originally reported 382,000. Economists had predicted a smaller figure for first-time claims, anticipating around 376,000.

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Romney Campaign Releases Housing Paper Amid Roundabout

With gaffes and down polls embroiling his campaign, Republican presidential nominee and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney unveiled a housing white paper on Friday to reposition his message and salvage his campaign. The document, titled ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├àÔÇ£Securing the American Dream and the Future of Housing,├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├é┬Ø prescribes several conservative policy must-haves. For starters, there├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós much ado about the return of private capital to the secondary mortgage market and devolution for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Oh, and jobs. Twelve million to be exact.

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First-Time Jobless Claims Dip, Remain Elevated

First-time claims for unemployment insurance fell 3,000 to 382,000 for the week ended September 15, the Labor Department reported Thursday, topping market expectations. Economists had predicted a smaller about 373,000 first-time claims. Continuing claims - reported on a one-week lag - dropped 32,000 to 3,272,000 from the prior week's 3,304,000, revised from the originally reported 3,283,000. The report - tracking the nation's unemployment rate and job creation - is compiled based on payroll.

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Mortgage Rates Set New Lows as Economy Tilts Here, There

A decline in interest by homebuyers shaved just 0.2 percent off mortgage applications last week, with refinance activity climbing. The Mortgage Bankers Association, which unveils the figures in a weekly survey, found application volume upward-bound by 24 percent on a seasonally unadjusted basis. Refinance applications started to swell last week. The Refinance Index went up 1 percent, with the refinance share of mortgage activity cresting at 81 percent of total applications, up from 80 percent last week.

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