It's not everyday that government number-crunchers get into a public snit, but this is one of those days. At issue is the huge drop in U.S. jobless claims - potentially important because it would suggest an improving employment picture. A few hours after release of the report on Thursday, Business Insider, citing an unnamed Labor Department source, said the drop was partly the result of California not submitting all of its claims. I posted an item, as did others, and by late Thursday folks at the California Employment Development Department were going nuts. They said the report was wrong - that the state had indeed submitted all its claims numbers. The EDD's spokeswoman, Loree Levy, says that claims are going down because of various factors, including the unseasonably warm weather that's delayed seasonal employment patterns and the fact that the employment situation in California is getting better. No word yet from the Labor Department on what might have happened. Over at BI, Blodget has yet to run a correction, though he has posted his correspondence with state officials.
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