The number of American’s filing for initial unemployment claims rose by 840,000 in the week ended 3 October, largely in line with expectations.
That’s well below the pandemic peak, but new claims have been stuck at between 800,000 and 900,000 for the past month.
A number of large corporations including American Airlines, United Airlines and Disney, have all announced massive layoffs this week, which will lift jobless claims in the weeks to come.
Meanwhile, Congress has been unable to agree on a new stimulus package to support the newly-unemployed.
Enhanced benefits, which increased the unemployment insurance payments by $600 a week, expired at the end of July and have yet to be replaced.
Arise Business Correspondent Laurie Laird says this means the 11 million Americans left jobless by Covid measures could be experiencing a significant hit to income, which is likely to feed through to consumer spending, which comprises about two-third of the US economy.
President Donald Trump has sent mixed messages about a stimulus package.
Earlier this week, he discouraged Congressional Republicans from negotiating relief until after the election. However, he suggested he may be amenable to piece-meal relief over the coming weeks.