Every Insured Jobless American files his/her unemployment status with the US Labor Department after which they are entitled to some benefits. The frequency of the data is weekly. Since frequency is very narrow analyst prefer using 4 weeks average to gauge the economic health of the country. Higher number signifies economy may shrink sooner as lower unemployment will impact consumption and hence GDP to some extent.  Data is announced every Thursday for the previous week.

Data can be found here

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