DNC on Latest Unemployment Numbers
October 8, 2020
DNC Chair and former Labor Secretary Tom Perez released the following statement after another 1.3 million Americans filed initial claims for unemployment last week:
“The morning after Mike Pence claimed he and Donald Trump were charting an economic ‘comeback,’ we learn another 1.3 million Americans filed for unemployment last week. For the 29th consecutive week, more people have filed for unemployment benefits than during the single worst week of the Great Recession. Donald Trump has the worst jobs record of any president in recorded history. And yet, he wants us to put him in charge of cleaning up the mess he created? Not only did Trump’s incompetence exacerbate this crisis, but he continues to make things even worse. Just this week, Trump abandoned the American people yet again by playing politics with COVID relief. Americans need relief. They need a president who will put them first. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are committed to ending this pandemic, providing the American people with the relief they need and deserve, and helping our nation build back better.”
1.3 million Americans filed new unemployment claims last week. For 29 consecutive weeks, more people have filed for benefits than during the single worst week of the Great Recession.
CNN: “Together, regular and PUA first-time claims stood at 1.3 million last week, on an unadjusted basis.”
New York Times: “After falling swiftly from a peak of more than 6 million last spring, weekly jobless claims have stalled at a level far higher than the worst weeks of past recessions.”
Over 25 million Americans are receiving some form of unemployment relief – over 18 times where we were a year ago.
Washington Post’s Heather Long: “**Over 25 million Americans are on unemployment aid**”
64 million unemployment claims have been filed since the pandemic began, far surpassing the total during the entire Great Recession.
Business Insider: “The roughly 64 million unemployment-insurance filings made since early February handily overshadow the 37 million filings made during the 18-month long Great Recession.”
Job recovery slowed significantly in September.
New York Times: “Job growth slowed further in September, as fading government support and the failure to contain the coronavirus threatened to short-circuit the once-promising economic recovery. Employers brought back 661,000 jobs in September, the Labor Department said Friday. That is down from 1.5 million in August, and far below the 4.8 million jobs added in June.”
Washington Post’s Heather Long: “The jobs recovery is slowing down – a red flag for the economy & recovery. March: -1.4 million lost April: -20.8 million lost May: +2.7 million back June: +4.8 million back July: +1.8 million back August: +1.5 million back September: +661,000 back”
More than five months past the worst of the recession, only half of jobs lost during the pandemic have come back.
Washington Post’s Heather Long: “The US lost 22.2 million jobs in March & April So far, 11.4 million jobs – 51.5% — are ‘back’ **But 10.7 million Americans still do not have a job again** (And that doesn’t count people who are working again at reduced hours or lower pay)”
Layoffs increased in September and permanent job losses continue to mount, increasing by 2.5 million since February.
Reuters: “U.S. employers announced another 118,804 job cuts in September, with bars, restaurants, hotels and amusement parks leading the pack amid sluggish demand several months after the COVID-19 pandemic struck the nation. The layoffs reported by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas on Thursday were up 2.6% from August and boosted total job cuts so far this year to a record 2.082 million. The previous all-time annual high was 1.957 million in 2001.”
BLS: “In September, the number of permanent job losers increased by 345,000 to 3.8 million; this measure has risen by 2.5 million since February. The number of unemployed job leavers rose by 212,000 to 801,000 in September.”
Black and Hispanic unemployment remain in double digits as only one-third of jobs for Black Americans have come back.
ABC News: “Broken down by racial groups, the latest data shows a disproportionate impact of the unemployment crisis on people of color. The unemployment rate in September for white workers was 7%, for Black workers was 12.1%, for Hispanic workers was 10.3% and for Asian workers was 8.9%.”
Washington Post’s Heather Long: “This is such an unequal recovery. Barely a third of jobs are back for African-American men and women compared to 60% for white men and women. Jobs recovered: Black men: 34% Black women: 39% Hispanic: 55% Asian: 59% White men: 60% White women: 60%”
The U.S. economy is still down more jobs than the peak of the Great Recession.
Washington Post’s Catherine Rampell: “The job market is definitely healing, but U.S. payrolls are still down 7% on net since Feb. That means the economy is still ‘missing’ more jobs today than it did at the worst period of any prior postwar recession.”
Small businesses remain in peril with millions of small firms at risk and hundreds of thousands expecting to have to close in the next six months.
New York Times: “More than 400,000 small businesses have already closed and millions more are at risk.”