WASHINGTON DC – With the coronavirus pandemic shutting down businesses across America, a record 6,6 million individuals filed for unemployment benefits last week.
That was far greater than economists had expected, especially after the record broke last week with 3.3 million claims.
The previous high was 695,000 in October of 1982.
The U.S. Labor Department’s records go back only to 1967.
In 2 weeks, Americans have filed nearly 10 million jobless claims.
That corresponds to roughly 6% of America’s 165 million work force.
Last month, the U.S. Senate & House approved a $2 trillion economic relief package that expands unemployment benefits, including gig workers and freelancers. The President signed it.