More than 11500 Mainers filed for unemployment last week

Andrew Cummings
May 23, 2020

The state saw about 116,000 claims for that program in the past week.

The state says it doled out almost $359 million dollars this past week alone to more than 319,000 Tennessee claimants.

NationallyThe Georgia and SC figures were reported as the federal government said Thursday that more than 2.4 million people applied for US unemployment benefits last week in the latest wave of layoffs from the viral outbreak that triggered widespread business shutdowns.

The Maine labor department now separates initial claims for state unemployment and the federal assistance program in its weekly reporting, it said.


The federal government's Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation is a program to help residents who have run out of regular benefits.

With the initial claims numbers being distorted by processing issues, attention has shifted to the number of people staying on unemployment benefits rolls.

Nationwide, about 2.2 million people filed for unemployment, marking about 40 million job losses since the pandemic began.

"The new normal includes much more virtual workforces, much less business travel, and those are the things that impact your local businesses", Dimitriou said. That's roughly equivalent to all of the initial claims filed during the Great Recession, from December 2007 through June 2009. On its website, the department said part of last week's spike in applications likely reflected an "increase in fraudulent claims".


Differences in how frequently people claim continued benefits in states are yet another reason why it's become more hard to get a precise read on week-to-week changes in the labor market at the state level. That's more than 11 percent points higher than the previous month, and also higher than the April, 2019, rate by the same margin.

Both states on Thursday released figures on initial filings for unemployment benefits.

The industries seeing the most claims and benefits paid for the week ending May 2, from which most recent data are available, continue to be accommodation and food services, retail trade, health care and social service, administrative and support and waste management and remediation services. On an non-seasonally adjusted basis, initial claims eased to 2.17 million last week from 2.36 million. Continuing claims on that basis totaled 22.9 million for the week ended May 9, up from 20.9 million. 132,888 PUA applications were processed and were eligible for payment.


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