American workers have seen unprecedented job stability and rapid employment growth three years after the global purging of millions of jobs. That’s despite worries about an impending recession and interest rates steadily climbing for over a year.
The Labor Department announced on Thursday that the number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits grew by 4,000 to 229,000 in the week ending May 20 from 225,000 the week before. A substantial decrease of 17,000 was applied to the previous week’s total.
Despite a minor increase in claims for unemployment benefits last week, the labor market in the United States continues to be tight, and employers are reluctant to lay off workers.
The weekly claims data is a good proxy for job losses in the United States.
After the previous week’s total was revised downward by 12,500, the four-week moving average of claims remained steady at 231,750. Analysts have pointed to a consistent rise in the four-week averages as evidence that layoffs are speeding up, although they are hesitant to anticipate an impending uptick in releases.
The number of persons receiving unemployment benefits increased by roughly 5,000 in the week ending May 13.
To slow the economy and reduce inflation that had been stubbornly high for four decades, the Federal Reserve hiked its benchmark lending rate for the tenth consecutive time at the beginning of this month. The job market is still to the workers’ advantage, but there have been signs that the Fed’s policies are having an effect.
By slowing the economy just enough to keep inflation under control without triggering a recession, the Fed hopes to accomplish a so-called soft landing. Many economists are pessimistic, anticipating a U.S. recession later this year.
Investors are hopeful the Federal Reserve will halt its rate-hike cycle at its upcoming meeting. According to minutes from the most recent session, Federal Reserve policymakers were divided over whether or not to raise the benchmark borrowing rate.