Another 787,000 Americans filed first-time claims for jobless benefits during the Christmas week, factoring in seasonal adjustments, the Labor Department reported Thursday.
It marked a decrease from the prior week. Overall, unemployment claims remain elevated well above historic norms, signaling ongoing pain in the job market during the coronavirus pandemic.
In addition to regular jobless claims, another 308,262 workers filed for aid under the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, which provides benefits to people who aren't eligible for regular state aid, such as the self-employed and gig workers.
Together, 1.1 million Americans filed initial claims for unemployment benefits, not adjusted for seasonal swings.
PUA payments will be extended by the new stimulus deal that President Trump signed into law on Sunday. The bill will also expand regular state benefits by $300 a week.
Meanwhile, 5.2 million workers filed continued claims, for their second week or more of benefits, in the week ending Dec. 19.