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5 Staffing Stocks to Buy as Jobless Claims Continue to Fall

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The U.S. economy is fast getting back on its feet as more people continue to show confidence. One of the first signs of this is the decline in weekly unemployment benefits for the past few weeks. This once again shows that as the economy continues to further reopen, more jobs are being created.

The labor market was one of the best-performing areas prior to the coronavirus outbreak and unemployment had hit a multi-year low. However, the pandemic completely changed the scenario with thousands losing jobs in weeks. The labor market continues to struggle but things may finally be changing.

Labor Market Improving

According to the Labor Department data released on May 20, weekly unemployment claims dropped to 444,000 for the week ended May 15 from 478,000 a week earlier. Estimates were of a 458,000 decline. This is the sixth straight week of decline in weekly jobless claims and the lowest since Mar 14, 2020, when the pandemic had just struck.

Moreover, a meager 95,086 applications were filed last week for jobless claims through the federal relief program. The figures are impressive given that the crisis is yet not over. During the peak of the pandemic, the applications had crossed the onemillion mark. That said, continuing claims jumped 111,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.75 million for the week ended May 8.

Economic Recovery Continues

The decline in weekly jobless claims is likely to continue as the economy continues to reopen and more jobs are created. Earlier this month, the Center for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) relaxed restrictions on mask usage and fully vaccinated Americans are no longer required to use a mask either indoors or outdoors.

Also, relaxations have been made before and after flying. The vaccination drive too is in full swing and expectations are that more than 70% Americans will be vaccinated before Jul 4. These factors have been adding to the confidence of the people and corporations.

More jobs are being created since the beginning of 2021 or from the time the vaccination drive started gathering steam. The Labor Department in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), released on May 11, said that new job openings rose by 597,000 to 8.1 million on Mar 31, hitting an all-time high. The data series was started in December 2000.

That said, only 266,000 new jobs were added in April, below the consensus estimate of 1.035 million. The shortage of skilled laborers due to high cost is becoming a major concern. Despite businesses increasing wages and other benefits, they are struggling to fill in open jobs. However, jobs are in high demand and vacancies need to be filled, which is a sign that the jobless claims will continue to fall in the coming weeks.

Our Choices

Given this scenario, it would be prudent to invest in staffing stocks as they will play a key role in fulfilling vacancies in the coming months.

TrueBlue, Inc. TBI is a leading provider of specialized workforce solutions. Ithelps clients improve growth and performance by providing staffing, workforce management, and recruitment process outsourcing solutions. 

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is more than 100%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 17.4% over the past 60 days. TrueBlue sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Heidrick & Struggles International, Inc. HSII serves the executive talent and leadership needs of the world's top organizations as the premier provider of leadership consulting, culture shaping and senior-level executive search services.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 71.8%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 38.2% over the past 60 days. Heidrick & Struggles International sports a Zacks Rank #1. 

Robert Half International Inc. RHI is one of the world's largest providers of professional consulting and staffing services.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 51.5%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 20% over the past 60 days. Robert Half Internationalcarries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). 

DLH Holdings Corp. DLHC serves clients throughout the United States as a full-service provider of healthcare, logistics and technical support services to the DoD and Federal agencies.

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is 25.4%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 15.6% over the past 60 days. DLH Holdingshas a Zacks Rank #2. 

Cross Country Healthcare, Inc. CCRN is a national leader in providing innovative healthcare workforce solutions and staffing services. 

The company’s expected earnings growth rate for the current year is more than 100%. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for current-year earnings has improved 77.6% over the past 60 days. Cross Country Healthcare holds a Zacks Rank #2.

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Cross Country Healthcare, Inc. (CCRN) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Heidrick & Struggles International, Inc. (HSII) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Robert Half International Inc. (RHI) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
TrueBlue, Inc. (TBI) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
DLH Holdings Corp. (DLHC) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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