The number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits was unchanged last week at 884,000, a sign that layoffs remain stuck at a historically high level six months after the viral pandemic flattened the economy.
The latest figures released by the Labor Department Thursday coincide with other recent evidence that the job market’s improvement may be weakening after solid gains through spring and most of summer. The number of people seeking jobless aid each week still far exceeds the number who did so in any week on record before this year.
Hiring has slowed since June, and a rising number of laid-off workers now say they regard their job loss as permanent. The number of people who are continuing to receive state unemployment benefits rose last week, after five weeks of declines, to 13.4 million, evidence that employers aren’t hiring enough to offset layoffs. Job postings have leveled off in the past month, according to the employment website Indeed.
“The claims data were disappointing,” said Rubeela Farooqi, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics. “It is especially concerning that the pace of layoffs has not slowed more materially even though the economy has reopened more fully and more and more businesses have come back online.”
* CBS 2…
The U.S. Department of Labor estimates 23,305 new unemployment claims were filed during the week of August 31 in Illinois, according to the DOL’s weekly claims report released Thursday.
That’s down from 26,194 claims filed the week before.
While the new claims reported Thursday morning are based on advanced estimates, the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) will be releasing a final number later Thursday.