CDI Corporation

U.S. jobless claims fall at end of August

The number of people filing for unemployment benefits fell at the end of August.

CBS News reported that claims dropped to 271,000 during the week of the 20th, representing a decline of 6,000 from the previous week. The source explained that unemployment applications, which are used to measure layoffs, are currently at their lowest numbers in 15 years. Fewer applications mean that more U.S. employers are retaining or expanding their workforces, indicating a general confidence in the country’s economy.

The Wall Street Journal noted that the U.S. added 215,000 positions during the month of July, bringing the nation’s unemployment rate to 5.3 percent. There has also been a spike in the number of available job postings, another strong sign of economic growth.

The source explained that all this data will likely have a huge impact on the Federal Reserve’s policy. While the Fed has kept short-term interests rates at zero since the U.S. entered a recession, the organization is expected to make major adjustments during its September meeting. Many economists anticipate a decision to be reached about how much and when these interest rates will be raised during this summit. The only factors that could deter this from occurring are concerns about financial instability in Europe and Asia, noted the source.