Small Business Hiring May Be Up, But So Are Unemployment Claims

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The other day we delivered the good news that according to the invaluable Intuit, small business hiring was on the rise. That remains great news today, but it’s tempered somewhat by the other side of the news coin.

According to the Associated Press, unemployment claims hit an eight-month high on Thursday, with an increase of roughly 43,000 claims from the month before. That was enough to send the stock market into a tizzy and cause drops, and it’s obviously a concern for the U.S:

“The trend is clearly upward, so that’s disconcerting,” said Kurt Karl, chief U.S. economist for Swiss Re. “When you get three or four weeks in a row of special factors, they’re no longer so special.”

There are reasons to believe this is a blip, according to the AP, not the least of which is a lot of unemployed teachers and staff during New York City’s spring break. There’s also the small matter of rising gasp rices, which are delivering body blows to companies across the U.S. and may be weakening the overall hiring climate.

Those gas prices are likely to be a factor in the months ahead, though, so watch that particular indicator with interest. What are your thoughts on this new?

 

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