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People are going back to work as jobless claims drop

S&P 500 Up for 3 Consecutive Sessions With Jobless Claims Report, British Houses Rise By Most in 15 years, Pfizer Seeks FDA Approval

S&P 500 rebounds as Jobless claims fall

The benchmark S&P 500 was up for a third consecutive session on Thursday, as jobless claims fell by more than expected.

Figures from the Labor Department showed that claims for unemployment benefits dropped by 38,000 to 326,000 last week.

This comes after it was initially expected that applications would come in at 348,000 for the week that ended October 2nd.

💡 Understanding Jobless Claims
The nation’s jobless claims are an extremely important indicator for a macroeconomic analysis. The monthly Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Report tracks how many new people have filed for unemployment benefits in the previous week. It is a good gauge of the U.S. job market.

Investors can use this report to form an opinion on economic performance, but it’s very volatile data on a weekly basis. Often, the moving four-week average of jobless claims is monitored rather than the weekly figure. 

However, with today’s numbers surpassing expectations, markets are now eagerly anticipating tomorrow’s NFP release, to be the most impressive rise in jobs in recent months.

As of writing, the S&P 500 was trading 1.06% higher.

British house prices increase by most since 2007

In the United Kingdom, the FTSE 100 was once again higher, as it was announced that house prices had risen by their most since 2007.

Data from Mortgage lender Halifax showed that prices rose by 1.7% from August to September, which is the largest monthly rise in 15-years.

Annually, prices were up to 7.4%, an increase of 0.2% from the same period last year and comes as consumer prices have rapidly risen in recent months.

💡 How does the price of houses affect currency markets
Housing data attracted lots of attention in 2006 leading up to the global financial crisis in 2008 following the collapse of the mortgage market in the US, the UK, Europe and several other prominent world economies.

Since then, housing data have become a benchmark with which to measure economic performance in many countries and as such, they now have a marked influence on the values of the currencies of the countries where these data come from.

This comes as the energy crisis in the UK continues, with Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng stating that the “Government will not bail out failed companies, there cannot be a reward for irresponsible management”.

GBPUSD rebounded on the news, hitting an intraday high of 1.3638, with the FTSE 100 closing 1.17% higher.

Pfizer seeks FDA approval to vaccinate 5-11 year old’s

Shares in Pfizer were trading higher in today’s session, as the company confirmed it was seeking approval to issue jabs to children under 11.

On Thursday, the pharmaceutical giant stated that it had asked the Foods and Drugs Administration for approval, so it can begin vaccinating 5 – 11 year olds with its COVID-19 jabs.

Reports had circulated in recent weeks that with the school-term resuming after summer break, and the rapid spread of Delta, parents were looking for vaccinations for minors.

Many now expect the FDA to look into the matter, with a potential green light being given by November.

$PFE was trading 1.73% higher as of writing.

“The hard part is discipline, patience and judgement.”

– Seth Klarman