The total number of initial Unemployment Insurance claims in January shrunk to 24,051, a decline of over 10,000 from December. Construction had the most claims, 7,446, which was still 4,909 fewer than in December, as most of the industry had already cut back for the season. The over-the-year change didn’t look good, up 3.1 percent. It was the third straight month with an annual increase in claims. Once again the largest proportional increase came in Mining, which had 263 initial claims, up 179.8 percent from the 94 claims in January 2015. Other noteworthy increases included Manufacturing (up 12.7 percent to 3,391) and Management of Companies and Enterprises (up 48.5 percent to 530). The biggest decline in claims came in Public Administration (down 15.5 percent to 311) and unclassified employers (employers who have failed to correctly identify their industry), which was down 13.8 percent to 1,367.
Perhaps due to the increases in traditionally male-dominated industries like Construction, Manufacturing, and Mining, initial claims for men were up by 4.4 percent (27,004) for the year, while claims for women were down 7.7 percent (to 7,181) for the year. Claims for White and Asian workers were up annually (2.3 and 1.3 percent, respectively) while claims for Black or African American workers were down 13.8 percent. American Indian or Alaska Native workers also saw annual declines, down 0.5 percent to 380 initial claims.
Seasonally Adjusted Data (Excel)