Interest Rate Roundup

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Jobless claims soar, durable orders tank

The parade of dismal economic data continues. Just this morning, we learned that January durable goods orders plunged 5.2%, much worse than the 2.5% drop economists were expecting. Orders have fallen for six months in a row, the longest stretch since the Commerce Department started tracking in 1992.

Meanwhile, December's reading was also revised sharply lower, to -4.6% from -2.6%. Orders ex-transportation fell 2.5%, worse than the 2.2% expectation. And nondefense capital goods orders, excluding aircraft (a key measure of core business spending), plunged 5.4% after a 5.8% decline in the prior month.

And what about the job market? Ugh. Initial jobless claims soared to 667,000 in the week of February 21 from 631,000 a week earlier. That was well above the 625,000 forecast and the highest going all the way back to 1982. Continuing claims set a fresh record of 5.112 million, up from 4.998 in the previous week.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Site Meter