US unemployment surged to 3.28 million last week, shattering a decades-old record in jobless claims as the coronavirus pandemic forced businesses around the country to shutter their doors. The number shattered the previous record of 695,000 unemployment claims set in 1982.
The four-week moving average was 1,731,000, an increase of 27,500 from the previous week’s revised average. “Most historical comparisons of this scale are inadequate,” said Glassdoor senior economist Daniel Zhao. “The closest would be natural disasters like major hurricanes. However, as today’s report shows, the coronavirus outbreak is economically akin to a major hurricane occurring in every state around the country for weeks on end.”
Jobless claims bring the first hard evidence that the novel coronavirus is bringing the nation’s economy to a grinding halt.
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, during a rare televised interview on Thursday morning, said the U.S. economy may already be in a recession, but said the downturn is unlike any other the U.S. has seen before.
MacDailyNews Take: The business shut everywhere, this surge in US unemployment claims was of course to be expected and, yes, this too shall pass. The U.S. will recover from this unique, temporary coronavirus hit!