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Unemployment

Updated at 9:38 a.m. ET

More than 1 in 4 U.S. workers have lost their jobs since the coronavirus crisis shut down much of the economy in March.

Just last week, another 2.1 million people filed for unemployment benefits, the Labor Department said Thursday. That's down 323,000 from the previous week but brings the total for the past 10 weeks to 40.8 million, which represents 26% of the civilian labor force in April.

One out of every three applications for unemployment in Florida has been deemed ineligible to get relief. Are the people applying for the support to blame, or is the trouble with the state’s unemployment system?

A data breach has occurred at Florida's Department of Economic Opportunity. The Department says it notified individuals that were part of the incident associated with unemployment claims. Exactly how many people are impacted has not been released.

In a letter to the department's head, Dem. Senator Linda Stewart (D-Orlando) asked how many people are affected, what information was released, how the breach occurred, and what is being done to make sure it won't happen again.

Unemployment claim form
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The number of Floridians who filed new unemployment claims last week remained almost unchanged from the previous week.

Updated at 3:49 p.m. ET

The coronavirus pandemic has taken a hit in the paychecks of close to half of U.S. households, the Census Bureau says.

Since March 13, 47% of adults say they — or another adult in their home — have lost employment income, while 39% say they're expecting their households to earn less from work over the next four weeks.

With the first of the month coming in less than two weeks, more than a fifth of adults report they have just slight or no confidence in their ability to make their next rent or mortgage payment on time.

Gov. Ron DeSantis at the podium
WFSU

Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday that most remaining unsettled claims in the state’s heavily criticized unemployment system are due to incomplete applications.

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Another 221,000 Floridians filed for unemployment benefits last week, even as restaurants and retail shops started re-opening with limitations for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic forced the shuttering of businesses around the state.

Updated at 5:19 p.m. ET

Nearly 3 million people filed for unemployment benefits last week — bringing the total to 36.5 million in the past eight weeks, the Labor Department said Thursday.

The number of people filing claims has been steadily dropping for weeks, since hitting nearly 7 million during one week in March. Still, claims remain at historically high levels, suggesting that the coronavirus isn't done pummeling the U.S. economy.

It was just a few months ago when things were looking up for Latinos. Wages were rising and unemployment had hit a record low.

Very briefly, at the end of 2019 and the start of 2020, there were slightly more women on American nonfarm payrolls than men.

That's no longer true. The historically disastrous April jobs report shows that the brunt of job losses fell on women.

Updated at 11:43 a.m. ET

The Labor Department delivered a historically bad employment report Friday, showing 20.5 million jobs lost last month as the nation locked down against the coronavirus. The jobless rate soared to 14.7% — the highest level since the Great Depression.

The highest monthly job loss before this was 2 million in 1945, as the nation began to demobilize after World War II. The worst monthly job loss during the Great Recession was 800,000 in March 2009.

Updated at 8:43 a.m. ET

Another 3.2 million people filed for unemployment for the first time last week, bringing the total number of jobs lost during the coronavirus crisis in the last seven weeks to at least 33.5 million.

Last week's number was down from the nearly 3.9 million initial claims filed the week ending April 25, and filings have fallen for five weeks in a row.

The claims numbers come one day before the release of the April jobs report, which is expected to show a staggering jump in unemployment to around 16%.

Hundreds of thousands laid-off workers who can’t get their unemployment money from the state of Florida got more bad news Wednesday. A state judge says she had no authority to order the immediate payment of jobless claims.

Governor Ron DeSantis has called it “a jalopy” and “a clunker,” and says it was “in tatters.” He’s talking, of course, about Florida’s online system for handling claims for unemployment benefits, which cost taxpayers $78 million and still doesn’t work right.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis is calling for an investigation into the state’s unemployment system, which he described as “broken.”

Updated at 8:38 a.m. ET

The telephone lines are still jammed at the nation's unemployment offices.

Another 3.8 million people filed claims for jobless benefits last week, according to the Labor Department. While that's down from the previous week's 4.4 million, a staggering 30.3 million have applied for unemployment in the six weeks since the coronavirus began taking a wrecking ball to the U.S. job market.

That's roughly one out of five people who had a job in February.

Florida Democrats want federal auditors to investigate the state’s flawed unemployment system and a backlog they say ranks among the worst in the country.

Unemployment claim form
iStock

Rushing to reduce a massive backlog of claims created as businesses shuttered due to the coronavirus, Florida’s unemployment agency announced Friday that it has now processed more than 31 percent of unemployment claims, with payments of up to $275 a week going out to 22 percent of the applicants.

Aquarium tank with people viewing fish
Visit Tampa Bay

Travel-related businesses, particularly those in Florida, have taken a hit from coronavirus and the safer-at-home policies put in place.

As a matter of fact, officials with the U.S. Travel Association say the impact is nine times greater than that of the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks.

Congressional leaders are now working with the USTA to expand relief efforts to help the embattled industry recover.

Unemployment claim form
iStock

Florida has processed its hundreds of thousands of new unemployment claims more slowly than any other state.

unemployment application
iStock

Florida’s unemployment rate shot up to 4.3% in March, as coronavirus-induced closures of Florida’s theme parks, hotels and large numbers of businesses caused the highest levels of joblessness in almost two years.

Empty hotel parking lot
Maria Tsyruleva

Hotels in Florida that typically would be packed for spring break and the promise of summer have become ghost towns during the coronavirus pandemic.

Updated at 10 a.m. ET

The number of people seeking unemployment benefits shot up again last week, as 6.6 million more people filed initial claims, the Labor Department said Thursday. About 16.8 million have filed in the past three weeks, and analysts expect the numbers to keep rising.

In the prior week, ending March 28, a revised 6.9 million people filed first-time claims.

Rep. Jackie Toledo speaks during a press conference in Tampa
Julio Ochoa / WUSF Public Media

A Tampa Republican lawmaker on Friday called for an audit of the state’s overwhelmed unemployment-compensation system, as work was underway to finalize a paper version of the benefits application.

In the wake of the coronavirus, Florida’s troubled unemployment office has been crippled by a barrage of applications that topped 317,000 applications in just the last 10 days.

Those problems did not come without warnings.

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Becky McCray/Flickr

Florida's economy has suffered a severe blow from the coronavirus outbreak. We want to hear from you.

Florida’s unemployment rate approached the end of 2019 at a historic low.

The rate fell to 3.1 percent in November, down from 3.2 percent in October and putting it at a mark hit twice in the past 40 years, most recently in March 2006, according to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ office.

job postings chart
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity

The unemployment rate in the Tampa Bay region was 2.9% in October, the lowest since November 1999. But as the area’s jobless rate nears record lows, some companies are struggling to find and keep workers. 

July 2019 Florida unemployment figures came in at 3.3 precent, down slightly from the month earlier, and down from the 3.7 national rate.
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity

Florida gained almost 23,000 jobs last month, the most of any state other than Texas.

Figures released Friday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows Florida's unemployment rate in July was 3.3 percent, a slight decrease from 3.4 percent in June.

Florida has added 227,000 jobs year over year, the most of any state but Texas and California.

Pixabay

Gov. Ron DeSantis touted private-sector job creation Friday as Florida’s unemployment rate held steady from May to June.

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