6.6 million more Americans have filed for unemployment
This story was updated on April 9 at 4:17 p.m. Eastern time.
More than 6.6 million Americans filed for unemployment claims last week, the second largest number on record.
About 6.8 million people filed claims for the week ending March 28, which the Labor Department revised up by 219,000 from the figure it initially released. This means that in the past three weeks, almost 17 million Americans have filed claims.
The largest number on record prior to the spread of COVID-19 was during a week in October 1982, when about 695,000 people filed for unemployment.
The state with the highest number of unemployment claims last week was California, which had more than 925,000 unemployment claims.
For the week ending March 28, there were nearly 872,000 layoffs in the state’s services industries, according to the Labor Department.
Following California, Georgia had nearly 388,000 people file unemployment claims. Earlier this month, Gov. Brian Kemp ordered residents to stay at home, only going out for essential services, and recently extended his shelter-in-place rules through April 30. The governor previously said Georgia would not require such extreme measures.
New York, the U.S. epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic, also had one of the highest numbers of unemployment claims, at nearly 367,000.
In terms of percent increase, Georgia also topped the list, with the number of people filing for unemployment claims increasing 190%. Arkansas followed, at 119%. The state has taken stricter safety measures, banning dine-in services at restaurants and bars and ordering salons and tattoo parlors to shut down.
The governor of Arizona, which had the third-highest percentage increase at almost 49%, also issued stay-at-home orders which took effect earlier last week.
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