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Unemployment Rate is 14-year high of 6.5 Percent


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In the week ending Oct. 25, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 479,000, unchanged from the previous week's revised figure of 479,000. The 4-week moving average was 475,500, a decrease of 5,000 from the previous week's revised average of 480,500.


The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.8 percent for the week ending Oct. 18, unchanged from the prior week's unrevised rate of 2.8 percent.


The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured unemployment during the week ending Oct. 18 was 3,715,000, a decrease of 12,000 from the preceding week's revised level of 3,727,000. The 4-week moving average was 3,709,500, an increase of 28,000 from the preceding week's revised average of 3,681,500.




The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 443,728 in the week ending Oct. 25, an increase of 27,617 from the previous week. There were 303,357 initial claims in the comparable week in 2007.


The advance unadjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.4 percent during the week ending Oct. 18, an increase of 0.1 percentage point from the prior week. The advance unadjusted number for persons claiming UI benefits in state programs totaled 3,228,606, an increase of 94,217 from the preceding week. A year earlier, the rate was 1.7 percent and the volume was 2,241,942.


Extended benefits were available in Alaska, North Carolina, and Rhode Island during the week ending Oct 11.


Initial claims for UI benefits by former Federal civilian employees totaled 1,363 in the week ending Oct. 18, a decrease of 290 from the prior week. There were 1,512 initial claims by newly discharged veterans, a decrease of 389 from the preceding week.


There were 14,006 former Federal civilian employees claiming UI benefits for the week ending Oct. 11, an increase of 471 from the previous week. Newly discharged veterans claiming benefits totaled 22,890, an increase of 543 from the prior week.


States reported 978,142 persons claiming EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) benefits for the week ending Oct. 11, a decrease of 117,036 from the prior week.


The highest insured unemployment rates in the week ending Oct. 11 were in Puerto Rico (5.2 percent), Michigan (3.5), Nevada (3.4), Oregon (3.4), California (3.1), New Jersey (3.1), South Carolina (3.1), Arkansas (3.0), Pennsylvania (3.0), and North Carolina (2.8).


The largest increases in initial claims for the week ending Oct. 18 were in Tennessee (+1,956), Oregon (+1,802), Indiana (+1,297), Virginia (+898), and Florida (+543), while the largest decreases were in New York (-6,080), Michigan (-5,894), Illinois (-3,795), Ohio (-2,923), and Kentucky (-2,494).

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Guest Obama-Biden Transition Project

Barack Obama held his first press conference as President-Elect to call for "swift action" to fix the nation's economy.


"Immediately after I become president I will confront this economic crisis head-on by taking all necessary steps to ease the credit crisis, help hardworking families, and restore growth and prosperity," President-Elect Obama said.


The press conference followed a private meeting of Obama's Transition Economic Advisory Board, a group of 17 leaders on economic issues that includes former U.S. Treasury Secretaries Robert E. Rubin and Lawrence E. Summers, Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Warren Buffett.


Watch the full video of President-Elect Obama's remarks at the press conference below



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Guest The White House

Statement by the President on Job Report Numbers


Today, we received monthly job report numbers that reflect the difficult challenges confronting our economy. We are in the midst of a global financial crisis, and tight credit markets have made it harder for businesses to borrow the money they need to meet their payrolls, grow, and create new jobs.


The Federal government has taken aggressive and decisive measures to address this situation. It will take time for these measures to have their full impact on an economy in which many Americans are struggling. But in recent days, we have seen some encouraging signs. The market for lending between banks has loosened considerably, and the Federal Reserve's efforts to stabilize the commercial paper market have provided businesses with an urgently needed source of financing for day-to-day operations.


In the weeks ahead, my Administration will continue working to return our economy to the path of prosperity and growth. I will continue urging Members of Congress to approve free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea, and I look forward to hosting an international financial summit with leaders of both developed and developing nations on November 15.


I understand that Americans remain deeply concerned about the challenges facing our economy, but our economy has overcome great challenges before, and we can be confident that it will do so again.

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