Businesses are reopening after coronavirus shutdowns, governments are easing restrictions, and workers are gradually returning to their jobs. But the layoffs keep coming.Gee, you think?
Another 1.5 million people applied for state unemployment benefits last week, the Labor Department said Thursday, while 760,000 more filed new claims for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, a federal emergency program that extends benefits to self-employed workers, independent contractors and others who don’t qualify for standard benefits.
It was the 13th straight week that filings topped one million. Until the present crisis, the most new claims in a single week had been 695,000, in 1982.
Economists said the current layoffs, though smaller than the wave in March and early April, were in some ways more worrying because they suggested that the crisis was reaching deeper into the economy even as lockdowns eased.
BTW, this was more claims than had been predicted.