US unemployment number jumps record high as result of COVID-19

3.3 million Workers applied for unemployment benefits

According to the figures released by US department of Labour- the unemployment claims soared nationwide last week amid the coronavirus pandemic. A statement of department of Labour said that “in the week ending March 21, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 3,283,000, an increase of 3,001,000 from the previous week’s revised level. This marks the highest level of seasonally adjusted initial claims in the history of the seasonally adjusted series. The previous high was 695,000 in October of 1982.”
Many economists believe that US economy has already entered into recession and it might shed more jobs in the weeks. The possible US lockdown as the result of COVID-19 pandemic could further jump the unemployment rate in next few weeks. The lockdown in California State is hurting the economy badly. All the four largest American states are experiencing the rise in unemployment.      
One American economist said that “if we make the assumption that net job losses reach 5 million this month, which may be very optimistic; the unemployment rate could jump from 3.5% in February to almost 7% in March. Such a monthly increase would be unprecedented in modern history”.
All the sectors have been hit hard: service industries, but also health care, arts, transport and warehousing and also manufacturing. 
The restaurants- hotels-cinemas- theatres- barber shops, gyms-pubs and sports centres shut down in a nationwide effort to slow the spread of the deadly COVID-19.    A nightmare scenario is unfolding. Next week’s data could be even worse, partly because some people couldn’t contact state authorities to file their jobless claims.
The Washington Post has reported that “laid off workers say they waited hours on the phones to apply for help. Websites in several states, including New York and Oregon, crashed because so many people were trying to apply at once. The most terrifying part about this is this is likely just the beginning of the layoffs.”
A lot of workers are not allowed to apply for unemployment benefits, meaning the true number of layoffs so far due to the coronavirus is likely far higher than 3.3 million. Self-employed workers, gig workers, undocumented workers, students, and people who worked fewer than six months last year are typically not eligible for unemployment insurance in most states.
The average unemployment benefit check is currently $385 a week, which is less than half the typical weekly paycheck in the United States. The amount is slated to raise an additional $600 a week once Trump signs the relief bill into law, a substantial increase meant to tide workers over as they are forced to stay home.

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