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This was the 7th straight week claims topped the 3 million mark. 

The 7-week total is 33.476 million.

Employment Level

Employment Level 2020-05-05

Note that 20 Years of Employment Gains Have Vanished

The above chart does not reflect the 3.169 million in today's report.


ADP vs BLS Employment 2020-04-05

Yesterday, I commented ADP Reports 20 Million Jobs Lost: A Disaster Comparison Three Ways.

Unemployment Rate

Yesterday, the Chicago Fed addressed the question Is the Unemployment Rate a Good Measure of People Currently Out of Work?

The Chicago Fed projected a baseline unemployment rate of 9.4% with a U-6 rate of 18.9% and a COV-Underutilization Rate of 29%. T

he Cov rate is essentially the U-6 rate except that it makes additions for Cov-impacted workers.

I find 9.4% downright silly, but we find out tomorrow.

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Upcoming Jobs Report: What Will the Unemployment Rate Be?

On April 30, and based on the 30 million claims, I asked Upcoming Jobs Report: What Will the Unemployment Rate Be?

I arrived at 21%. For comparison purposes, Bloomberg estimates 20%.

New Claims Impact?

Q: How does today's number impact by 21% calculation?

A: It doesn't. The BLS reference week methodology explains why.

Reference Week

The reference week for the BLS Household Survey unemployment report is the week that contains the 12th of the month. 

For the April Jobs Report coming out Friday, May 8, the reference week was the 12th through the 20th.

Today's 3.169 million claims are for the week April 26 through May 2. 

Some of those will be laggards who were out of work during the reference week, but I suspect most will fall into the May unemployment report, not April's. 

That said, this 7th grim week suggests May will be another bad month. 

The reference week for May is the 10th through the 16th.

If people return to work toward the end of this month, the May report mighty be on the high side vs reality.