Unemployment claims in Nevada, California crushing record numbers
Unemployment claims are off the charts in California and Nevada.
Both states are at all-time highs for claims and California has had to bring in former, retired employees to help with processing.
In Nevada, about 92,300 initial claims were filed for unemployment insurance this past week, a record number, according to the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation.
That’s an increase of 1,352% for the week ending March 21, up from 6,356 claims last week.
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This is the highest number of claims in Nevada history by 83,353. The previous high was 8,945 for the week ending Jan. 10, 2009.
The large number of claims can be attributed to the coronavirus outbreak shutting down casinos and businesses across the Silver State.
Each Thursday, the United States Department of Labor Employment & Training Administration releases preliminary unemployment insurance weekly claims data for the prior week.
Following this release, the Nevada Department of Employment, Training, and Rehabilitation may release its finalized claims data for the same period. Data is available through March 21. Claims are split into “initial claims,” which correspond to recent layoffs, and “continued claims” which are the regular process of requesting benefits for a particular week.
Claimants will typically have a single initial claim, followed by a period of weekly continued claims. The finalized claims number can differ from the preliminary claims number, as the finalized number does not include interstate claims.
Continued claims, which moved slightly behind initial claims, rose slightly in the week to 19,822 from last week’s total of 19,475. Continued claims levels are expected to rise significantly next week.
Nationally, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims rose to 3,283,000, an increase of 3,001,000 from the previous week’s revised level for the week ending March 21.
About one-third of those three million claims are from California.
The state recently hired former, retired workers and transferred other employees to help process an avalanche of over 1 million unemployment claims that have been filed since March 13.
The announcement came as Los Angeles saw a 50% jump in newly confirmed coronavirus cases, which could top one million within weeks, a public health official said.
While the state had some of the first cases of the virus in the nation from travelers coming from the epicenter of the outbreak in Wuhan, China, it has managed to keep its numbers below those of New York, which is at the heart of the crisis.
California’s cases grew by more than 800 Thursday to 3,800 people infected, and deaths increased by 16 to 81 total, according to numbers kept by Johns Hopkins University. By comparison, New York had more than 37,000 cases and 385 deaths.
Kurt Hildebrand from the Record Courier and AP contributed to this report.
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