Announced this morning, weekly jobless claims fell by 1,000 to 216,000 for the previous week, as expected. Throughout 2018, weekly jobless claims have remained in the low 200k range. Historically, levels below 300k are considered normal for a healthy economy. The last time we have seen levels near 200k was in the 1960’s, underscoring the firm labor market currently in place. Until the strong labor market leads to higher wages and inflation, the Federal Reserve should have flexibility to moderate their interest rate policy should they choose to do so. In all, equity futures are lower this morning heading into the market open following yesterday’s strong gains.
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