Weekly jobless claims in the United States rise more than expected

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In this news, we discuss the Weekly jobless claims in the United States rise more than expected

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The number of Americans filing for the first time unemployment benefits rose last week, confirming weakening labor market conditions as worsening COVID-19 pandemic disrupts restaurant and other business activities.

The state’s initial jobless claims totaled 965,000 seasonally adjusted people for the week ended Jan. 9, up from 784,000 the week before, the Labor Department said Thursday. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast 795,000 candidates last week.

The claims were also likely lifted by new claims for benefits after the government renewed an unemployment supplement of $ 300 until March 14 as part of additional relief of nearly $ 900 billion approved at the end of December.

Government-funded programs for the self-employed, small workers and others who do not qualify for state unemployment programs as well as those who have exhausted their benefits have also been extended.

Authorities in many states have banned indoor dining to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The economy cut jobs in December for the first time in eight months.

The Federal Reserve’s Beige Book report with anecdotal information on business activity gathered from contacts across the country in early January showed Wednesday that “contacts in the leisure and hospitality sectors reported further reductions jobs due to stricter containment measures.

The central bank also noted that the resurgence of the coronavirus is causing staff shortages in manufacturing, construction and transportation. The virus has infected more than 22.5 million people in the United States and killed more than 376,188, most of all countries.

Although jobless claims fell from a record 6.867 million in March, they remain above their peak of 665,000 during the great recession of 2007-09. Economists estimate that the job market could take several years to recover from the pandemic.

Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Edited by Chizu Nomiyama

Original © Thomson Reuters

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