Economy

New claims for unemployment aid remain elevated in Maine

New claims for unemployment aid remain elevated in Maine”

New applications for USA jobless benefits were barely changed last week, the Labor Department said Thursday, as the economy continues to struggle in its recovery from the coronavirus shutdowns earlier this year. The number of claims can exceed the number of people filing for benefits because of overlap between state and federal aid programs.

In contrast, continuing unemployment claims dropped to 10.98 million.

"Let's hope we soon break below the 800k mark in initial claims soon because hanging around the 800k+ level is still not a good place to be, especially going into the winter", Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group, said in a client note.

The slight drop in new claims underscores the gradual improvement that the labor market has seen since the initial lockdowns of the pandemic eased.

New US jobless claims almost flat at 840000 - Economy - Business

And the data remains complicated by California's two-week pause on processing new claims, with the country's most-populous state providing an outdated level that will be revised in future reports. Even so, recent layoff announcements from companies including Walt Disney Co. and Allstate Corp.as well as multiple airlines could start showing up in the numbers in the coming weeks.

"The suffering facing the unemployed still reaches far and wide, and the failure to provide any aid for American workers will reverberate throughout the economy", Stettner said.

New applications for unemployment benefits have gradually receded from a pandemic peak of 6.9 million in late March but the weekly total has fallen by less than 100,000 in the past month. Unemployment typically increases as the weather cools and tourists disperse.

The total number of Americans claiming Pandemic Unemployment Assistance - a federal program for self-employed and gig workers - decreased by 433,500 to 11.4 million in the week ended september 19, while initial filings dropped by 44,270 last week to about 464,400.

More news: North Korea ex-ambassador to Italy defected to South: Lawmakers



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