According to economists polled by Bloomberg, there were only 305,000 new unemployment insurance applicants expected for the week ending March 7. When the data was released by the U.S. Department of Labor, however, the actual figure beat out even the experts’ low opinions.

The DOL reported that first-time claims dropped to 289,000 people in early March, down by 36,000 claims on a weekly basis. The four-week moving average fell to 302,250, down by 3,750 from the previous seven-day period. Overall, there were nearly 2.9 million claimants near the end of February, while there were more than 3.4 million at the same time in 2014.

“This is a much bigger unwind of last week’s substantial weather hit than we expected, and it puts claims close to our estimate of the underlying trend,” Pantheon Macroeconomics Ltd. chief economist Ian Shepherdson said in a note to clients, Bloomberg reported.

On a state-by-state basis, the largest increases in initial unemployment claims were found in New York, followed by Tennessee, California, and Georgia. The highest insured jobless rates were in Alaska, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.

Job openings hold steady in early 2015
While unemployment claims dropped slightly in March, overall job openings were strong in early 2015.

Recently released data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that there were roughly 5 million job openings in January, about the same as there were in December 2014. However, that total is also the highest level of openings since January 2001. Coincidentally, there were also roughly 5 million hires in January, while 4.8 million employees either quit, were discharged or laid off during that month.

“Key trends highlight a positive labor market.”

Overall, the BLS reported that the net change in employment was positive between January 2014 and January 2015. This is when there are more hires than separations, and during those 12 months, there were 59.1 million hires to only 56 million separations. That is good for a net gain of 3.1 million.

These are positive signs for the labor market and the economy as a whole, as key trends show an increase in job gains and a simultaneous decline in unemployment insurance claims.

Juggling tax rates and difficult employees can become challenging at your company. Here at Corporate Cost Control, we understand these problems and are well-positioned to help. Our extensive background in cost control and human resources will allow you to better manage your unemployment insurance expenses.


Contact CCC to see how we can save your organization time and money.
Contact our Sales Team
(800) 207-6926

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