First-time weekly claims for unemployment benefits jumped to 240,000 for the week ended November 19, according to data released Wednesday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s a sharp increase of 17,000 from the previous week’s upwardly revised tally of 222,000, and surpasses economists’ expectations of 225,000.
Continuing claims, which count people who have filed for jobless aid for at least two weeks in a row, rose to 1.55 million for the week ending November 12.
The number of unemployment claims have been hovering near historic lows due to a labor market that has remained considerably tight even as workers flooded back after the end of pandemic-era lockdowns.
But that could be changing – and in short order: Large companies, notably some of the biggest names in tech, have started conducting mass layoffs.
This is a developing story. It will be updated.
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