COVID-19

Unemployment claims are soaring. Are the states ready for the onslaught?

Mar 25, 2020
More than one million Americans are expected to have filed for benefits last week, with more on the way.
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What's the difference between a furlough and a layoff?

Mar 24, 2020
The distinction matters for your personal economy and the economy at large.
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COVID-19

Weekly unemployment claims start to give a snapshot of COVID-19 layoffs

Mar 19, 2020
Many companies are laying off workers. Weekly jobless claims will tell us how many people are now filing for state unemployment benefits.
For the week of March 14, there were 281,000 new claims, the highest level for initial claims since Sept. 2, 2017.
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COVID-19

More and more people are being laid off. How far might unemployment go?

Mar 18, 2020
As unemployment climbs, it gets harder for the economy to come back.
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Why the seasonal adjustment in monthly jobs data?

Mar 6, 2020
Smoothing over predictable seasonable ups and downs in unemployment can reveal underlying economic trends.
One BLS economist said unseasonably mild weather would lead to an uptick in construction.
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Where's the wage growth?

Jan 10, 2020
In December, wage gains slowed from earlier in 2019, with average hourly earnings up 2.9% year over year.
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Wages grew faster in past expansions

Jan 10, 2020
When unemployment is low, wages typically shoot up. But wages are growing more slowly than they did 20 years ago.
Even though unemployment is at a 50 year low, wages have room to grow. Above, a Fight for 15 protest in New York.
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Half of Americans got no pay raise this year

Dec 20, 2019
A Bankrate.com survey of 1,000 people across the country found only 49% of respondents got a raise in 2019.
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Kai Explains

Should we be paying closer attention to weekly unemployment claims?

Dec 4, 2019
"It's really a measure, I think, of worker confidence in the economy," said Tara Sinclair of George Washington University.
Some states require unemployment insurance claims be filed in person.
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A bright spot on jobs: prime-age workers

Sep 6, 2019
According to the Labor Department, the employment-to-population ratio for 25- to 54-year-olds hasn't been this high since 2008.
A Walmart cashier rings up purchases as customers look on.
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