UNCATEGORIZED

Unemployment claims drop to 269,000, another pandemic low

Nov 4, 2021, 10:48 AM
FILE PHOTO (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)...
FILE PHOTO (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits fell to a fresh pandemic low last week, another sign the job market is healing after last year’s coronavirus recession.

Jobless claims dropped by 14,000 to 269,000 last week. Since topping 900,000 in early January, the weekly applications have fallen more or less steadily ever since and are gradually moving toward pre-pandemic levels of around 220,000 a week.

Overall, 2.1 million Americans were collecting unemployment checks the week of Oct. 23 — down from 7.1 million a year earlier when the economy was still reeling from the coronavirus outbreak.

The four-week average of claims, which smooths out weekly ups and downs, dropped below 285,000, also a pandemic low.

The job market has been rebounding since the pandemic struck the U.S. economy in the spring of 2020. In March and April of that year, employers slashed more 22 million jobs as governments ordered lockdowns and consumers and workers stayed home as a health precaution.

The economy has recovered 17 million of the jobs lost to the pandemic and on Friday, the U.S. will release its closely watched monthly report on jobless claims. Economists believe employers added 400,000 jobs in October, more than twice the jobs added in September. But the United States is still 5 million jobs short of where it stood in February 2020.

“Claims are headed in the right direction, showing the labor market recovery continues, albeit slowly,” wrote economists with Contingent Macro Research on Thursday. “Moreover, some state-level volatility appears to be easing, and seasonal adjustments were minor and should remain so for the next few weeks.”

Government relief checks and the rollout of vaccines have given consumers the confidence and financial wherewithal to resume spending — so much so that companies have scrambled to keep up with surging demand. They complain they can’t find workers to fill their job openings — a near record 10.4 million in August — and are being forced to raise wages, offer signing bonuses and improve benefits and working conditions.

And on Thursday, the government mandated full vaccination against COVID-19 for companies with 100 or more employees by Jan. 4, or tens of millions of Americans. Those who are not vaccinated by then must undergo weekly virus testing.

It is unknown how such mandates will play out in employment numbers.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Uncategorized

Sponsored Articles

hand holding 3d rendering mobile connect with security camera for security solutions...
Les Olson

Wondering what security solutions are right for you? Find out more about how to protect your surroundings

Physical security helps everyone. Keep your employees, clients, and customers safe with security solutions that protect your workplace.
Many rattan pendant lights, hay hang from the ceiling.Traditional and simple lighting....
Lighting Design

The Best Ways to Style Rattan Pendant Lighting in Your Home

Rattan pendant lights create a rustic and breezy feel, and are an easy way to incorporate this hot trend into your home decor.
Earth day 2022...
1-800-GOT-JUNK?

How Are You Celebrating Earth Day 2022? | 4 Simple Ways to Celebrate Earth Day and Protect the Environment

Earth Day is a great time to reflect on how we can be more environmentally conscious. Here are some tips for celebrating Earth Day.
Get Money Online...

More Ways to Get Money Online Right Now in Your Spare Time

Here are 4 easy ways that you can get more money online if you have some free time and want to make a little extra on the side.
Lighting trends 2022...

Lighting Trends 2022 | 5 Beautiful Home Lighting Trends You Can Expect to See this Year and Beyond

This is where you can see the latest lighting trends for 2022 straight from the Lightovation Show at the Dallas World Trade Center.
What Can't You Throw Away in the Trash...

What Can’t You Throw Away in the Trash? | 5 Things You Shouldn’t Throw in to Your Trash Can

What can't you throw away in the trash? Believe it or not, there are actually many items that shouldn't be thrown straight into the trash.
Unemployment claims drop to 269,000, another pandemic low