In one week, 3.3 million Americans filed for unemployment. That's the highest number since the Department of Labor began tracking the data in 1967 - shattering the Great Recession peak of 665,000 in March 2009 and the previous all-time high of 695,000 in 1982.
The number is higher than expected. Dow Jones economists had predicted 1.5 million new claims, though Wall Street expected higher.
The coronavirus pandemic has forced companies around the nation to implement layoffs, production slowdowns, and extensive social distancing policies. Some have shut down entirely. We've written about quite a few prominent companies who have taken a hit in our industry, including Steelcase, Herman Miller, Behold Washington, Flexsteel, and others.
At the state level, jobless claims look staggering. Pennsylvania saw an increase of twenty times - going from 15,439 to 378,908 in a week. New York's number quintupled and California's tripled. Louisiana's rose from 2,255 to 72,620. Some states have seen their websites crash.
A $2 trillion relief package has been passed by congress. It's the biggest emergency plan in the history of the United States.
We will see what happens.
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