This is breaking news. Please check back here for updates. First-time claims for unemployment insurance continued a modest trend down last week, though the total remains well above what was considered normal prior to the coronavirus pandemic and was a touch higher than Wall Street estimates.The Labor Department reported Thursday that 751,000 U.S. workers filed for benefits, compared to 758,000 from the week before. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been expecting 741,000. This was the third straight week that claims were below 800,000, and the four-week moving average fell to 787,000.- Advertisement – – Advertisement – At the same time, the total for those receiving benefits showed a sharp decline, falling by 1.15 million to 21.5 million. For the same period in 2019, there were 1.44 million people getting benefits, reflecting just how deep the jobless problem remains in the coronavirus pandemic era.The insured unemployment rate, which is a simple computation of those receiving benefits against the total workforce, fell 0.3 percentage points to 5%. The headline unemployment rate, which includes multiple other factors, is expected to edge lower to 7.7% from the 7.9% level in September.Illinois saw the biggest weekly increase in claims, climbing 23,200 to 53,138, according to unadjusted data. Kansas, Kentucky, Ohio and Pennsylvania all reported gains of more than 3,000. Massachusetts reported the biggest decline at 9,055 while Florida, Georgia and Michigan also reported substantial decreases.- Advertisement – The numbers come a day before the government’s official nonfarm payrolls report, which is expected to show a gain of 530,000 in October. However, this week’s report is not part of the survey week the Bureau of Labor Statistics uses to compute the monthly number.Claims have been trending lower since the late-March peak of 6.9 million but remain elevated by historical standards. The pre-pandemic peak was 695,000 in October 1982.Continuing claims fell for the sixth straight week, this time by 538,000 to nearly 7.3 million. However, part of the reason for that was the continued migration from those losing benefits into the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Assistance program, which saw its rolls increase by 277,564 to 3.96 million. Continuing claims are delayed by a week.- Advertisement –
To put it simply, Badger basketball is frustrating.I had developed several theories throughout this losing streak for why Wisconsin is failing in the improved Big Ten, all of which fell apart in spectacular fashion.At first I thought the lack of bench scoring might be the problem, and UW was relying too much on their starters. Then Keaton Nankivil went off for 21 points on six of eight shooting, and the Badgers still lost (I am aware he is technically a starter, but at 16.5 minutes per game, I’m counting him as a bench player.)Next, I considered perhaps the absence of a spark from the freshmen was the root of UW’s problems. Of course, Jordan Taylor willed the team into overtime against Iowa with several clutch three pointers, and the Badgers still lost.Undeterred, I sat down to write this column determined to find the source of the longest losing streak in Bo Ryan’s career at Wisconsin. I was going to pore through statistics, break down this six-game losing streak and offer a stunning analysis of why Bo’s squad has gone in the tank. I was even prepared to end the column with a John Madden “Boom!” to celebrate my triumph.Of course, about 10 minutes into the whole process I was reminded that head coach Bo Ryan is a much smarter man than I, and since he hasn’t figured this streak out, it would prove to be the ultimate exercise in futility.But because I had no other column ideas, I plowed ahead anyways hoping to uncover the source of the Badgers problems. What I discovered gave me a headache, so I can only imagine the pain it must be inducing in our hoop squad’s fearless leader.There is no problem with the Badgers.At least no glaring, obvious if-they-could-only-do-this-they-would-win type of flaw.In fact, the men’s basketball team is disturbingly average in almost every single way. They rank fifth in scoring, and they are tied for fourth in defense in Big Ten conference games. They rank sixth in scoring margin in the Big Ten. Rebounding, field goal percentage, turnovers, assists, blocks — you name it. The Badgers are between eighth and fourth in almost every major category.For you efficiency stat geeks, UW rates fifth in the Big Ten in total efficiency, according to statistic analyst Ken Pomeroy.Even in the one category UW leads — free throw percentage — they are only eighth in free throws attempted, which equals (drum roll please…) tied for fifth in shots made from the charity stripe.Sorry for the statistic overload, and if your eyes glazed over while reading them, just trust me: The Badgers rank right in the middle of the Big Ten.Why then, is the basketball team ninth in the conference, and what does this mean for the remaining 10 games on the schedule?Why have the Badgers lost two games in overtime during this streak and have two others that went down to the last possession?It means Ryan’s team needs to improve in less quantifiable, more frustrating aspects of the game: luck and play in the clutch.This can be a comfort to fans or the final nail in the coffin, all depending on your point of view. Either you have determined that with leading scorers like Marcus Landry and Trevon Hughes, UW cannot compete in crunch time, or you look at it the way I do.In Bo we trust.This season has been brutal to watch, no doubt about it. It’s been made even worse with shocking losses to the likes of Northwestern and Iowa.But I would follow Ryan off a bridge like a lemming, and I am not willing to write off the season just yet. The statistics show this team has it in them to make some noise in the final games of the season. And Ryan has yet to underachieve in his seven years at Wisconsin. Usually, Ryan takes average teams and makes them Wisconsin teams. So maybe I couldn’t find a problem because there was nothing to find. And maybe I am blindly optimistic, but maybe Ryan can stun everyone once again.Michael is a junior majoring in journalism. Think he is crazy for putting so much faith in Bo Ryan? He can be reached at [email protected]
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration has recalled bagged salad distributed to a dozen Midwestern states by Hy-Vee, Aldi and Jewel-Osco grocery stores after 122 people in seven states were sickened. Nineteen have been hospitalized. The salad mix is contaminated with cyclospora, a parasite that can cause severe diarrhea. The salad mix is packaged as Hy-Vee Brand Garden Salads, Jewel-Osco Signature Farms Brand Garden Salads ALDI Little Salad Bar Brand Garden Salads. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said the most people sickened are in Iowa with 54 and Illinois with 30. Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska and Wisconsin also have reported illnesses.