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Initial and Continued Claims

The national weekly seasonally adjusted initial claims series is a leading economic indicator and is widely followed by economic and financial analysts to help them assess where the economy might be headed. It is one of ten components in the Composite Index of Leading Economic Indicators. To smooth out the volatility in the weekly initial claims data, a 4-week moving average is used to assess trends.

Oklahoma's unemployment insurance claims data presented below are not seasonally adjusted.

There are two components to the unemployment insurance claims data. The first component, initial claims, measure how many job seekers are filing an unemployment insurance claim for the first time. The second component continued claims, indicate the number of job seekers that continue to receive the unemployment insurance benefit after their initial claim.

For the file week ending January 16, the advance number of initial claims, unadjusted, totaled 5,948, a decrease of 1,069 from the previous week's revised level of 7,017. For the same file week, the less volatile initial claims 4-week moving average was 6,014, an increase of 183 from the previous week's revised average of 5,831.

For the file week ending January 16, the advance unadjusted number of continued claims totaled 34,591, a decrease of 6,884 from the previous week’s revised level of 41,475. For the same file week, the less volatile continued claims 4-week moving average was 39,339, a decrease of 2,050 from the previous week's revised average of 41,389.

The following two charts illustrate changes in initial and continued claims from January 2, 1988, through January 16, 2021.  This data comes from the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (DOLETA). To download a spreadsheet containing the data click here. For data on other states or for more information on the data visit the Employment and Training Administration's website at: https://oui.doleta.gov/unemploy/claims.asp.

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