First-Time Jobless Claims Fall to 385K

Roy Maurer By Roy Maurer August 5, 2021
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woman getting laid off

​States reported that 385,000 workers filed for new unemployment benefits during the week ending July 31, a decrease of 14,000 from the previous week's revised level. Although new claims are down significantly from their weekly level of more than 1 million this time last year, they are still elevated compared to their 2019 weekly average of just over 200,000.

The total number of workers continuing to claim state unemployment benefits fell to 2.9 million. About 12.9 million people overall are receiving some type of unemployment aid, down from over 30 million a year earlier.

As the labor market continues to sluggishly recover, half the states have terminated enhanced federal unemployment benefits provided since early in the COVID-19 crisis. Federal benefits expire for the remaining states in early September.

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