Nearly 1.9 million Americans filed initial jobless claims last week, bringing the total claims to 42.6 million since the coronavirus pandemic forced the US economy to shut down in March.
Continued jobless claims, which count workers who filed for benefits for at least two weeks a row, unexpectedly rose from the prior week. They stood at 21.5 million, versus 20.1 million expected
For 11 weeks in a row, jobless claims have been in the millions. Before the pandemic, the labor department had never recorded a single week of jobless claims over a million.