Virus Outbreak Illinois Unemployment

A man writes down information in front of and Illinois Department of Employment Security office in Chicago on Thursday, April 30, 2020. Another 3.8 million people filed claims for jobless benefits for the week ending April 25, according to the Labor Department.

(The Center Square) – Nearly 1.5 million American workers filed new unemployment claims last week as the number of new coronavirus cases surged in a number of states as testing also increases.

The 1.48 million claims filed in the week ending June 20 was down about 60,000 from the previous week's adjusted level, according to data released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor.

In the 14 weeks since states issued stay-at-home orders to slow the spread of COVID-19, more than 47 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits. Millions have since gone back to work as states allowed businesses deemed non-essential early on during the pandemic have been allowed to reopen under certain conditions.

Continuing claims totaled 19.52 million in the week ending June 13 for an unemployment rate of 13.4 percent. That's down 0.5 percent from the week prior, according to the department of labor.

The number of new claims have dropped for 12 consecutive weeks, but they remain well above pre-pandemic levels.

California once again led all states in new claims, with 287,354 last week. Georgia saw 124,283 new claims last week, the second highest in the country.

​Dan McCaleb is the executive editor of The Center Square. He welcomes your comments. Contact Dan at dmccaleb@thecentersquare.com.

Executive Editor

Dan McCaleb is a veteran editor and has worked in journalism for more than 25 years. Most recently, McCaleb served as editorial director of Shaw Media and the top editor of the award-winning Northwest Herald in suburban Chicago.