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States reported that 190,000 workers filed for new unemployment benefits during the week ending Jan. 14, a decrease of 15,000 from the previous week’s revised level. Weekly jobless claims are at their lowest level since late September 2022. The number of workers continuing to claim unemployment benefits—1.64 million—is below pre-pandemic levels.
The labor market remains resilient, despite inflation-fighting efforts by the Federal Reserve intended to slow the economy. The low level of new unemployment claims is an indicator that employers overall are not laying off large numbers of workers, despite yesterday’s announcement that Microsoft is planning on cutting 10,000 jobs. Economists believe that companies are reluctant to let workers go after having difficulties finding talent during the pandemic.