Q3 GDP and Jobless Claims First Look

Two big numbers out this morning, we’ll put up the initial take on both:

GDP (from Bloomberg)

The U.S. economy grew in the third quarter for the first time in more than a year, propelled by stimulus-driven gains in consumer spending and home building.  The world’s largest economy expanded at a 3.5 percent pace from July through September, exceeding the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, after shrinking the previous four quarters, figures from the Commerce Department showed today in Washington. Household purchases climbed 3.4 percent, the most in more than two years.

Jobless Claims (from the New York Times)

The government said Thursday that the number of people claiming jobless benefits for the first time dropped slightly last week, evidence that the labor market remained weak even as the economy is recovering.

The Labor Department said that its tally of newly laid-off workers seeking unemployment insurance fell by 1,000 to a seasonally-adjusted 530,000 last week. Analysts expected a steeper drop to 521,000.

Still, the four-week average, which smoothes out volatility, fell for the eighth straight week to 526,250, its lowest level since early January. Claims are slowly declining as companies lay off fewer workers.

The number of people continuing to claim benefits, meanwhile, has dropped sharply by 148,000 to 5.8 million, below analysts’ expectations.

US Futures are higher this morning after the bloodbath of the past week.  So far, the market seems pleased.  Now we await the deconstruction of these reports…