Weekly jobless claims higher than expected, labor market takes hit from rising Covid cases

The pace of first-time filing for jobless claims increased last week, raising the possibility of a coronovirus outbreak in the jobs market.

The total number of claims was 778,000 which ended on 21 November. 733,000 ahead of expectation from economists polled by Dow Jones and up from 742,000 last week.

Continued claims for profit collectors for at least two weeks continued their decline, falling to 6.07 million, a drop of 299,000.

The news comes amid the continuing rise in coronovirus cases and concerns that the national health system is being strained. New daily cases have dropped by an average of 174,225 in the past week, and health officials worry that Thanksgiving may send that level as high as families across the country to celebrate the holiday.

Although the weekly claims are less than 800,000 for the last six weeks, they are still well above pre-pandemic records as the government bans activity. The hospitality industry has been particularly hard pressed with restrictions on capacity and the possibility that many will only have to return to operation or stop settling in winter and cases will continue to increase.

Many displaced workers are seeing their profits run out.

Enrollment in the Epidemic Unemployment Assistance Program, which provides benefits to those not ordinarily eligible, decreased to 311,675 from 8,019 the previous week. However, the PUA emergency program, which helps those who have lost their benefits with 13 more weeks of compensation, has increased from 466,106 to 9.15 million, although this data is two weeks behind.

The total profit achieved for the first week of the week reached 20.45 million, up from 135,297 from the first week. This is just under 1.5 million compared to a year ago, underscoring how much loss the labor market suffers.

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