There is a slight drop in unemployed claims as Congress acts on more stimulus

A large number of Americans continued to hit the unemployment line last week as the continued rise of Kovid cases involved in America’s unemployment problem.

The Labor Department reported on Thursday that the total number of unemployed claims for the week ended January 16 was 900,000. This was slightly lower than the Dow Jones estimate of 925,000 and a downward revised total of 926,000 at the previous week’s low.

Amidst this news the markets reacted slightly in view of market fears that President Joe Biden and Congress would soon distribute another large fiscal infusion to help the economy through the epidemic. Stock futures on Wall Street point to modest gains.

Continued claims led to a slight decrease for the week, falling from 127,000 to 5.05 million.

Weekly claims have been decreasing since the eruption in the early days of the epidemic in March and April, but again began to drift higher in October amid commercial restrictions.

The hospitality industry in the form of hotels, bars, restaurants and casinos has been hit hardest by either shutting down or pushing to limit capacity for guests. In January alone, the industry lost 498,000 workers.

The latest claims report showed that the total number of Americans receiving unemployment benefits continued to decline, although large-scale epidemic-related programs declined by 2020.

The most recent figures showed just 16 million gainers, down from 18.4 million. However, claims related to the epidemic will not decline as the latest financial package includes expanded benefits for displaced workers.

Many big states have been heavily onboard with sanctions, with claims to increase in the past week. California (-58,665), New York (-12,212) and Pennsylvania (-9,638) all showed significant declines. The games came from Arizona (15,347) and Illinois (13,948).

This is breaking news. Please see here for updates.


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