INITIAL JOBLESS CLAIMS | ENERGY WEAKNESS GROWS

Takeaway: Energy state labor market conditions continue to deteriorate relative to the country as a whole.

The labor market was unchanged week over week as there was no change in either SA claims, which came in at 276k, or in the year-over-year rate of change in NSA claims, which held steady at -7%.

Claims in energy states, however, continued to worsen versus the country as a whole in the week ending October 31 (the most recent state-level data available). The spread between our two indexed series in the chart below widened again to 28 from 25 in the previous week. We continue to expect that spread to widen in coming months as energy companies see their hedges roll off.

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The Data

Initial jobless claims came in at 276k, consistent with the previous week's reading, which was not revised. Meanwhile, the 4-week rolling average of seasonally-adjusted claims rose 5k WoW to 267.75k.

The 4-week rolling average of NSA claims, another way of evaluating the data, was -7.0% lower YoY, which is consistent with the previous week's reading.

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Yield Spreads

The 2-10 spread rose 6 basis points WoW to 148 bps. 4Q15TD, the 2-10 spread is averaging 143 bps, which is lower by -10 bps relative to 3Q15.

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Joshua Steiner, CFA

Jonathan Casteleyn, CFA, CMT