New U.S. Jobless Claims Rise Sharply to 898000 Last Week

  • New U.S. Jobless Claims Rise Sharply to 898000 Last Week

New U.S. Jobless Claims Rise Sharply to 898000 Last Week

After spending several weeks in a rut, barely improving, US jobless claims moved higher in the week ending October 10 to 898,000.

State claims are up almost 11,000 from the prior week, and mark the fourth straight week that first-time filings have gone up in the commonwealth.

Jobless claims unexpectedly rose last week.

The report comes a day after Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin quashed hopes for additional aid to support the faltering economic recovery before the election. Airlines that had received federal funding in the spring were barred from laying off workers until October 1. Questions remain about how much the data is affected by a couple of complicating factors, including issues with fraud, which have lead the state of California to pause reporting its data, backlogs and process quirks that require people to apply for traditional unemployment and get rejected before applying for PUA.

Claims hit a record 6.87 million for the week of March 27.

"America is unlikely to see a full recovery and a return to low unemployment until the pace of weekly UI claims dials back significantly". But economists believe the so-called continuing claims are declining in part as people exhaust their eligibility for benefits, which are limited to six months in most states.

"The 4-week moving average was 866,250, an increase of 8,000 from the previous week's revised average".

Nationwide, on average, unemployment benefits replace about 33 percent of what recipients earned at their previous job.

Initial claims for state and federal benefits remained steady at about 2,400, although the actual number of Mainers who filed claims decreased by about 150 from 2,150 the previous week. The government also said 373,000 people applied for jobless aid under a separate program that made the self-employed, contractors and gig workers eligible for unemployment benefits for the first time. Overall, Americans' saving rate remains sharply higher than pre-pandemic levels, suggesting that some people will be able to continue paying some bills out of their savings, at least for now. The economy is still roughly 10.7 million jobs short of recovering all the 22 million jobs that were lost when the pandemic struck in early spring.

The weak economic figures pose a challenge to President Trump in the final weeks of the campaign, particularly as many economists say they are the result of a pandemic that the USA has yet to get under control.