Warning: Steem witnesses executed a hard fork on 2020-05-20, seizing 23.6M STEEM from 65 accounts. The funds were transferred to an account named @community321, the ownership (and intentions) of which have not been revealed. The witnesses claim to have been targeting accounts which defended against a hostile takeover in early March, but at least 2 accounts on the list have been inactive for over 4 years.
"Jobless Claims Point to Slowing Rebound," says today's Wall Street Journal front-page headline. That is much too strong a conclusion to base on such thin evidence. Layoffs always continue, even in booms, yet employment rises whenever the number of new hires exceeds the number of separations due to layoffs and quits.
As the graph shows, the 4-week trend of initial claims is not rising but flat. The unemployment rate began rising and falling before initial claims did, which makes initial claims a dubious clue to future unemployment rates (and to net losses or gains in jobs).
The Atlanta Fed GDPNow model estimates that Third Quarter real GDP will rise at 35.2% annual rate, more than 10% in a single quarter. Of course that "annual rate" of increase can't possibly continue for a year any more than the First Quarter's 31.% annualized decline could continue. In that sense, there is no doubt at all that the rate of growth will be "slowing" in the Fourth Quarter. But that doesn't imply anything particularly troublesome unless too many State governments revert to banning economic activity and mobility with so-called "lockdowns."
Unemployment is well below the national average in the most open states such as Georgia (5.6%) or Oklahoma (5.7%) and well-above average in states with pandemic mandates that remain highly restrictive like California (11.4%) or New York (12.5%). Big differences in state employment opportunities have nothing to do with the presences or absences of federal "stimulus" checks and everything to do with state government policies.
On the second page of the WSJ story about "jobless claims on the rise," the headline above it says "Some Industries Enjoying a Hiring Boom." It's always like that, to varying degrees. When hiring booms exceed layoff busts, employment goes up.