3.3 Million Claims for Unemployment Benefits Wipe Out Job Gains for 2018 and 2019

Following the joblessness and closed businesses that attend the spread of COVID-19 in the United States, an unprecedented 3.28 million people have applied for unemployment benefits from the government. This rate of jobless claims is the largest in American history, and analysts said the current number dwarfs the mass unemployment claims of 1982 and 2008 by far. In fact, the unemployment claims for 2008 stood at 665,000.

“This represents the single worst one-day piece of labor market news in America’s history,” said Andrew Stettner, a senior fellow at the Century Foundation.

Paul Ashworth of Capital Economics revealed that the current number of unemployment claims could wipe out all the job gains of 2019 and half of that of 2018. To make matters worse, many newly laid-off workers are not able to file for claims since the websites of many states are now overwhelmed with people applying for financial help from the government.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin stated that federal lawmakers have approved an economic stimulus bill that will see every American adult receiving up to $1,200 to enable them to live through the joblessness occasioned by COVID-19. The Senate approved an economic stimulus bill of $2.2 trillion to help people with the effects of the pandemic.

Some of the states with the largest number of unemployment claims include Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, California, and Utah among others. The Department of Labor said the number of claims may arise in the coming weeks even though the federal government has promised a financial bailout for every adult in the country. But then, analysts said some states are suffering the economic effects of business lockdown and mass retrenchments than others.

Meanwhile, analysts continue to look ahead to see how the lockdown and associated economic meltdown will impact the approaching general elections in November if COVID-19 persists across the nation. How President Donald Trump handles the coronavirus crisis might impact on how he fares at the polls, but a Monmouth University survey shows 90% of Republicans saying he is doing just fine while 20% of Democrats give him credit for managing the coronavirus threat well.

Source: cbsnews.com