Jobless Claims Remain Near Record Lows as Americans Stay Out of the Workforce

by R. Mitchell -

 

Unemployment claims totaled just 205,000 in the week ending Dec. 18, a new post-pandemic low.

The Labor Department figure shows an unchanged amount of claims from the previous week ending Dec. 11 in line with economists’ expectations.

Experts believe the surging, but mild, Omicron COVID-19 variant could push layoffs higher in the upcoming weeks as consumers rethink their holiday travel and leisure plans, the WSJ reported.

Other factors, like the end of the pre-paid child tax credit that has offered families hundreds to thousands of dollars per month during 2021 and the lower-than-average tax refunds that those same families will receive because of it could seriously slow spending as the country moves into 2022.

Whether those same factors push more workers back into the job market or if consumers simply hunker down remains to be seen.

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Jobless Claims Remain Near Record Lows as Americans Stay Out of the Workforce