Two million Americans file for unemployment aid

by Muizat Hameed

United States of America’s Labour Department announced today that more than 2 million Americans have recently filed for unemployment aid in the past week.

The department noted that the development shows that the effects of coronavirus closures linger even as the labor market bounces back.

It was reported that out of the over 2 million, about 1.5 million filed for state unemployment insurance benefits, while another 700,000 requested Pandemic Unemployment Assistance – a new federal program for self-employed and gig workers.

This number of workers seeking aid remains at historic levels as close to 21 million people are presently receiving weekly unemployment benefits, while 9.7 million self-employed workers are receiving assistance.

But the pace of job cuts has steadily declined in the nearly three months since the coronavirus struck hard, forcing business closures and sending the economy into recession. While the number of weekly applications remains high, the dwindling pace of claims suggests the job market has bottomed out.

Nick Bunker, director of research at the Indeed Hiring Lab, said that “The sudden-stop nature of this recession meant that employment dropped suddenly due to layoffs and discharges. Now, a variety of data sources indicate the U.S. labor market has hit a bottom, at least for the immediate future.”

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