Another drastic rise in new unemployment claims.

Another round of horrible news on the jobs front today. Again a big rise in the ranks of the unemployed.

4/16/20 – Wall Street Journal – U.S. Jobless Claims Top 20 Million Since Start of Shutdowns – initial claims for unemployment benefits tallied 5.2 million last week. Here is the grim recap of the last four weeks:

3/21/20          3.3
3/28/20          6.9
4/4/2020 – released 4/9/20          6.6
4/11/20 – released 4/16/20          5.2
4 week total        22.0


For context of 22 million newly unemployed, consider the civilian labor force at the end of February was 164.5 million according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. There were 158.8 million employed.

In about a month, 13% of those people with a job lost their job (22.0M / 164.5M = 13.4%).

From another perspective, out of every 7 people who were working six weeks ago, 1 person is now unemployed.

My rather safe guess is the tally will keep growing.

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