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Unemployment claims climb to 719,000 after hitting pandemic low last week

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Last week, another 719,000 people filed new claims for regular state unemployment benefits (on a seasonally adjusted basis) – up 61,000 from the previous week and far more than economists expected – so that the labor market continues to struggle against the fallout from the coronavirus crisis.

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In the week ending March 27, another 237,025 people filed for unemployment under the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program, which extends benefits to self-employed workers not eligible for the programs. traditional state.

Unemployment remains incredibly high by historical standards: before the pandemic, the record for new weekly claims was 695,000 for one week in 1982.

Weekly data last week showed that new claims for regular state unemployment benefits fell to their lowest level since the start of the coronavirus crisis.

This improvement was driven by an accelerated vaccine rollout as well as the lifting of virus-related restrictions on businesses across the country.

Large number

18.2 million. This is the number of people who are currently receiving some form of unemployment benefits from the government, according to the Department of Labor. Employment data for March will be released on Friday.

To monitor

“Vaccines are always the best economic stimulus,” writes Daniel Zhao, senior economist at Glassdoor. “If the acceleration in vaccine distribution continues and the economy is able to reopen in the coming months, we could envision a strong summer with several months of monthly job gains of over a million. “

Further reading

Here’s what’s in Biden’s $ 2 trillion infrastructure plan (UKTN)

Who will be the biggest losers from Biden’s tax hikes? (UKTN)

Economy doesn’t need Fed’s easy monetary policy to keep booming, says BofA (UKTN)

Unemployment claims drop sharply to 684,000 as recovery gathers momentum (UKTN)


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