(PresidentialWire.com)- While many states are slowly beginning to relax some of the lockdown measures put in place to protect people from the Chinese coronavirus, the U.S. economy is still seriously struggling to cope with the impacts of closing down businesses all over the country. According to data released by the Department of Labor on Thursday, new unemployment benefits claims dropped to 1.88 million over the last week.
Unemployment benefit claims are effectively the same as total layoffs, though doesn’t include people who lose their jobs but are, for one reason or another, financially stable enough not to need to apply for the benefits. The new data from the Labor Department means that a total of 42 million American citizens have now lost their job as a result of the virus and are living off welfare granted to them by the state.
Economists predicted that last week would see around 1.79 million claims, meaning the total was more than some of the people most familiar with the situation believed. The week before last week was also revised by 3,000 applications, bringing the total to 2,126,000.
It represents the biggest economic hit to the United States economy since the Great Depression a century ago. The week of March 27 saw the biggest sudden peak in unemployment in American history, with 6.87 million people applying for government benefits as a result of losing their jobs in one week. Every week, the number of people applying for benefits has decreased but has remained in the millions.
Those applying for unemployment benefits from the government can expect more money than usual. Owing to the fact that people have lost their jobs from no fault of their own, and that it is unlikely they will be able to find alternate employment in the immediate future, federal support has increased by an extra $600 per week. This generous grant from the government even means that some people who have lost their job are now earning more money every week for staying at home than they did when they worked.
However, the grants won’t last forever. These increased unemployment benefits will expire come July.
Fingers crossed that more Democrat governors get on board with reopening the American economy so people can start getting back to work!