Last week recorded the highest number of requests for two and a half years.
The number of applications for unemployment benefits in the United States increased last week amid the economic consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.
The labor Department said on Thursday that 281,000 people applied for benefits for the first time – 70,000 more than the week before last. The new figure is the highest in two and a half years.
According to economists ‘ forecasts, more than a million Americans may lose their jobs by the end of March.
Employees of stores, hotels and restaurants who are paid by the hour are expected to be particularly vulnerable to the closure of companies on their own initiative or by order of the authorities.
Some states report a significant increase in the number of applications for unemployment benefits, which is usually only a temporary measure, since the amount paid is not comparable to the salary for regular employment.
So, in the state of Virginia, the number of applications this week increased 33 times, and in Pennsylvania and Colorado-20 times.
Many government agencies and companies are closing offices and transferring employees to remote work.
With this in mind, consumer spending, which accounts for 70 percent of business activity in the United States, will inevitably decline, as people fear contact with strangers who may be carriers of the virus.
Meanwhile, key stock indexes at the opening of trading on Thursday again showed a fall, losing more than 1 percent.
Asian markets also fell 1-2 percent on Thursday, while European markets showed similar dynamics in the afternoon.