The weekly unemployment report from the US Department of Labor is out, and depending on how you look at things, the numbers are about the same as last week, or getting worser. CNN explains:

Another 1.3 million people filed first-time jobless claims on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ending July 11, according to the Department of Labor. That's down 10,000 from the prior week's revised level.

On an unadjusted basis, more than 1.5 million people filed first-time claims, up almost 109,000 from the week before. The seasonal adjustments are traditionally used to smooth out the data, but that has tended to have the opposite effect during the pandemic.

Weekly seasonally adjusted first-time unemployment applications have been on the decline for more than three months since their peak in the last week of March. But last week's drop was less than expected.

Either way you slice it, we're looking at the 17th straight week of more than a million new unemployment claims. The unemployment rate currently stands at 11.9 percent, and the resurgence of the coronavirus in most states seems likely to lead to more business closures, either through orders aimed at controlling the pandemic, or just plain loss of business as people choose to stay the fuck home.

That's a whole heck of a lot people who'll just need to find something new, IVANKA.

CNN also notes that another measure of longer-term job-market health is not so encouraging, either:

Continued claims, which count workers who have filed claims for at least two weeks in a row, stood at more than 17.3 million for the week ending July 4, down 422,000 from the prior week. These seasonally adjusted claims peaked in May at nearly 25 million.

On an unadjusted basis, however, continued claims rose by more than 838,000 to 17.3 million.

This was the first increase in both unadjusted initial and continued claims in several weeks, which concerned some economists.

Glassdoor Senior Economist Daniel Zhao pointed out that on top of the increase in unadjusted unemployment insurance claims, we're only two weeks and a day away from the expiration of the temporary emergency unemployment benefits that were included in the CARES Act, with no definite commitment from Congress to renew them.

The rising UI claims add to the evidence that the recovery may be stalling and come at a critical juncture in the crisis as Covid-19 cases rise around the country and expanded unemployment benefits for Americans are set to expire. [...]

The risk of a surprise drop in employment in July is rising, pointing to a roller coaster recovery as the labor market starts to turn down again

CNBC also notes that in states where the coronavirus has been hitting especially hard, new unemployment claims are up sharply, too:

Initial claims filed in Texas and Florida last week totaled more than 100,000 in each state, the Labor Department said. In California, more than 200,000 workers filed for benefits, by far the most out of any state. Over 30,000 workers in Arizona also filed initial claims.

ON top of all that, the airline industry, which has been hit hard by the fact that very few people want to cram themselves into a metal tube for hours at a time, is poised to shed a metric assload of jobs in coming weeks. American Airlines warned that it plans to lay off 20,000 workers — about 29 percent of its US workforce — by the fall. The company is encouraging employees to take extended leaves or accept early retirement buyouts so it can cut its payroll costs before starting involuntary layoffs, which the company said are coming anyway; it's right there in the same story. Maybe we could get the airlines to support a universal basic income?

We haven't seen any statements from Donald Trump about what terrific news this is, although given other developments this week, we wouldn't be the least bit surprised if the administration suddenly tells the 50 state labor departments to start reporting their unemployment data to a new database in Jared Kushner's garage, which should effectively make unemployment go away completely.

[CNN / Department of Labor / CNBC]

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Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.


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