State Department of Labor Takes Steps to Catch Up as Tennesseans Wait on Unemployment Claims

Jeff McCord

More than a quarter of a million Tennesseans have open unemployment claims with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

While some unemployed claimants have waited more than nine weeks to receive a first benefit payment, the department said it is continuing to adapt to meet the unprecedented demand.

Read More

June Jobs Report: 4.8 Million Jobs Added, Unemployment at 11.1 Percent

The U.S. added 4.8 million jobs in June, while the unemployment declined to 11.1%, according to Department of Labor data released Thursday.

Total non-farm payroll employment rose by 4.8 million in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report, and the number of unemployed persons fell by 3.2 million to 17.8 million. These numbers mark the second month of both increasing jobs and dropping unemployment since the country lost a record 20.5 million jobs due to the coronavirus pandemic closures.

Read More

Study: Unemployment Pays Better Than Work for 68 Percent of U.S. Workers

The federal unemployment insurance emergency payments of an additional $600 per week to those laid off because of COVID-19 restrictions discourages work and slows down economic recovery, several reports indicate. Several congressmen have introduced proposals to address the issue.

A report published by the Foundation for Government Ability (FGA) found that by nearly tripling average unemployment benefits through the CARES Act, “Congress has created a situation where unemployment now pays better than work” for roughly 68 percent of U.S. workers.

Read More

Whitmer Touts Report Showing Stay-At-Home Order Decreased Infection Rate Even As Experts Warn of Second Wave

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer touted her stay-at-home policies on Thursday after a new report showed a drop in infection rates after the implementation of the orders, even as the report itself warns that the pandemic is not yet over.

The Imperial College COVID-19 Response Team released a report on May 24 detailing how stay-at-home orders and other interventions impacted the infection rate in individual states in the U.S. The report shows that Michigan’s rate of infection fell as Whitmer instituted various polices such as closing restaurants and schools. It continued to fall when she instituted a stay-at-home mandate on March 23, crossing the threshold of infection rates fewer than one around March 30.

Read More

Minnesota Unemployment Claims Continue Upward Trend

More than 29,209 Minnesota workers joined the ranks of the unemployed in the week ending June 6, bringing the total number of state residents filing unemployment claims to 439,782 since government restrictions were put in place to slow the spread of COVID-19.

Week-over-week, Minnesota witnessed an increase of nearly 7,555 new claims from the prior week, during which 21,654 new claims were reported.

Read More

1.5 Million More Laid-off Workers Seek Unemployment Benefits

About 1.5 million laid-off workers applied for U.S. unemployment benefits last week, evidence that many Americans are still losing their jobs even as the economy appears to be slowly recovering with more businesses partially reopening.

The latest figure from the Labor Department marked the 10th straight weekly decline in applications for jobless aid since they peaked in mid-March when the coronavirus hit hard. Still, the pace of layoffs remains historically high.

Read More

Whitmer Extends Suspension Requirements of Youth Work Permit Application

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer extended an executive order last week that temporarily suspended certain requirements relating to the youth work permit for Michigan workers.

The order allows suspends applications “to the extent it requires an application of a work permit to be made in person,” according to the order. It allows applications to be submitted by mail, email, fax or a web-based form.

Read More

Michigan Had 17 of 25 Counties with Highest Unemployment Nationally in April

Michigan was home to 17 of the 25 counties with the highest unemployment numbers in the nation in April.

According to a database from Lansing State Journal, Cheboygan County led the nation in unemployment with a 41.2 percent unemployment rate. Second in the nation was Mackinac County at 38.1 percent.

Read More

New U.S. Unemployment Claims Drop Below 2 Million, but Total Claims Top 42 Million

The number of new unemployment claims filed last week dropped to 1.88 million, the first time weekly claims didn’t exceed 2 million since mid-March.

Still, the total number of claims filed since government restrictions closed businesses deemed nonessential to slow the spread of COVID-19 surpassed 42 million in the 11 weeks since states began shutting down significant parts of their economy.

Read More

US Job Losses in May Could Raise 3-Month Total to 30 Million

The epic damage to America’s job market from the viral outbreak will come into sharper focus Friday when the government releases the May employment report: Eight million more jobs are estimated to have been lost. Unemployment could near 20%. And potentially fewer than half of all adults may be working.

Beneath the dismal figures will be signs that job cuts, severe as they are, are slowing as more businesses gradually or partially reopen. Still, the economy is mired in a recession, and any rebound in hiring will likely be painfully slow. Economists foresee unemployment remaining in double-digits through the November elections and into 2021.

Read More

U.S. Unemployment Claims Top 40 Million Since March

More than 40 million Americans have filed unemployment claims since mid-March, when state governments across the U.S. began restrictions to slow the spread of COVID-19, including closing businesses deemed nonessential.

Last week, an additional 2.12 million workers filed claims, according to U.S. Department of Labor data released Thursday, the 10 consecutive week in which new jobless claims were in the millions. The 2.12 million claims from the week ending July 23 is down 323,000 from the 2.44 million workers who filed for benefits in the week ending May 16 and is the lowest number of new claims since the week ending March 15.

Read More

Minnesota Reports 8.1 Percent Unemployment Rate for April

Minnesota’s unemployment rate increased to 8.1 percent in April, the first full month impacted by coronavirus restrictions.

Between March and April, the state’s unemployment rate jumped from 2.9 percent to 8.1 percent. Nationally, the unemployment rate rose from 4.4 percent in March to 14.7 percent in April.

Read More

Commentary: America’s Youth Experience a Great Awakening, Coronavirus-Style

The Great Awakening.

History books tell us “The Great Awakening” was (according to Wikipedia), “The First Great Awakening (sometimes Great Awakening) or the Evangelical Revival was a series of Christian revivals that swept Britain and its Thirteen Colonies between the 1730s and 1740s. The revival movement permanently affected Protestantism as adherents strove to renew individual piety and religious devotion. The Great Awakening marked the emergence of Anglo-American evangelicalism as a trans-denominational movement within the Protestant churches. In the United States, the term Great Awakening is most often used, while in the United Kingdom, it is referred to as the Evangelical Revival.”

Read More

Ohio Voters Could Decide Constitutional Amendment to Help Cover the Cost of Unemployment Benefits

Ohio voters could decide a constitutional amendment to cover the cost of unemployment payouts in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Senate Joint Resolution 4, if passed, would allow voters to decide whether to issue the bonds “to repay any federal borrowing in support of Ohio’s unemployment compensation program,” Ohio Senate President Pro Tempore Bob Peterson, R-Washington Court House, said during a Senate Finance Committee hearing.

Read More

More Than 47,000 File for Unemployment in Michigan as State Continues to Stay Shut Down

More than 47,000 people filed for unemployment in Michigan in the week ending May 9, bringing the state total to more than 1.7 million people in the state who have filed for unemployment insurance, according to recently released data from the U.S. Department of Labor.

According to the data, 47,438 people in Michigan filed for unemployment insurance in the state in the week ending May 9, down nearly 20,000 claimants from the previous week. Nearly 3 million people filed nationally.

Read More

More Than 40,000 File for Unemployment in Minnesota, State Totals Nearly 700,000

More than 40,000 filed for unemployment insurance in Minnesota, bringing the state total to nearly 700,000, according to recent data.

Data from the U.S. Department of Labor showed that 40,427 people filed for unemployment insurance benefits in the week ending May 9. That number is down a little more than 1,000 applicants from the week prior.

Read More

Nearly Three Million New Unemployment Claims Drives Two-Month Total to More Than 36 Million

New jobless claims continued their COVID-19 surge last week, driving the total number of those filing for unemployment benefits to more than 36 million over the past two months.

Even as many states across the country began easing restrictions and slowly reopening their economies, 2.98 million Americans filed for new unemployment benefits for the week ending May 9, according to data released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Read More

Report: Trump Preparing to Limit Temporary Workers into the US

President Donald Trump may prohibit some temporary workers from entering the U.S. in an executive order later this month, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday.

Trump’s anticipated order, much like his recent immigration ban, is meant to help mitigate the spread of coronavirus while protecting U.S. workers amid a monumental downturn in the economy, the WSJ reported.

Read More

Commentary: This Is What It Looks Like When You Shoot the Economy in the Head

25.4 million Americans have lost their jobs since February through mid-April, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports — 17.3 million who are unemployed, and another 8.1 million who have left the labor force completely — in response to the Chinese coronavirus pandemic as Americans sit home and wait it out.

Although the Bureau tabulates a reported unemployment rate of 14.7 percent, if you count the 8.1 million who left the labor force, too, plus the 5.8 million who were already unemployed, and the number looks more like 18.9 percent.

Read More

April Jobs Report: 20.5 Million Jobs Lost, Unemployment at 14.7 Percent

The U.S. economy lost 20.5 million jobs in April, while the unemployment rate rose to 14.7%, according to Department of Labor data released Friday.

Total non-farm payroll employment fell by 20.5 million in April, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics report, and the number of unemployed persons rose by 15.9 million to 23.1 million.

Read More

Republicans Move to Suspend Walz’s Six-Figure Salary Until Shutdown Ends

A Republican lawmaker put forward an amendment Thursday that would suspend Gov. Tim Walz’s salary during the course of his peacetime emergency declaration.

The move is the latest escalation in a battle between Republican and Democratic lawmakers over the best course of action in addressing the coronavirus pandemic. House Minority Leader Kurt Daudt (R-Crown) announced last weekend that he would block a public works bill from being passed until Walz agreed to relinquish his emergency powers.

Read More

Minnesota County With Highest Unemployment Rate Has Zero COVID-19 Cases

More than 600,000 Minnesotans have filed for unemployment since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic.

According to the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), the state has had 633,405 applications for unemployment insurance since March 16. That number represents a little more than 20 percent of the state’s workforce, Fox 9 reported Wednesday.

Read More

Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services Asks Employers To Report Employees Who Refuse to Come to Work

The Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services has set up a page on their website where employers can report employees who refuse to return to work as businesses set to reopen in the state.

Under the latest “Stay Safe Ohio” order, medical care such as a dentist or doctor visit that does not require an overnight stay reopened on May 1. Manufacturing, construction and distribution, as well as “general office environments,” reopened on May 4. Retail and service businesses are set to reopen on May 12, with social distancing practices.

Read More

Analysis: Interest Rates Indicate Unemployment Will Grow as Trump Administration Eyes Phase Four Relief Spending

by Robert Romano   The unemployment rate will likely continue rising as the spread between the 10-year treasury on one side, and the 2-year and 3-month treasuries on the other, continue rising over the next weeks and months, an analysis of interest rates over the past four recession shows, according to…

Read More

Gov. DeWine Encourages Ohioans to ‘Have a Little #SpiritWeekOhio Fun’ and ‘Stay in Your PJ’s All Day’

Nearly 1 million Ohioans have filed for unemployment since Gov. Mike DeWine shut the state down, and the governor has responded by calling for a “Spirit Week” to have “#SpiritWeekOhio fun” which includes wearing pajamas.

Six of the state’s most influential business organizations last week sent a letter to Gov. Mike DeWine last week urging him to reopen the economy as nearly one million Ohioans have now filed unemployment claims since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, as The Ohio Star reported Monday. The letter was signed by the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, Ohio Business Roundtable, the Ohio Manufacturers’ Association, the Ohio Council on Retail Merchants, Ohio Farm Bureau, and NFIB-Ohio.

Read More

Business Groups Paint Dim Picture of Ohio Economy, Urge DeWine to Reopen ‘Sooner Rather Than Later’

Six of the state’s most influential business organizations sent a letter to Gov. Mike DeWine last week urging him to reopen the economy as nearly one million Ohioans have now filed unemployment claims since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Read More

Tennessee Says Unemployment Filings Went Down in Second Week of March, But That Was Before the Lockdown

In a “what the heck” moment, the Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development on Thursday said unemployment filings for two-thirds of counties went down for the second week of March.

The filings were for March 8-14, just before the Chinese coronavirus took a toll.

Read More

House Democrat Criticizes Ohio Economic Recovery Task Force for Focusing Solely on Reopening

A top Democrat on the Ohio House’s coronavirus economic recovery task force criticized its Republican chair for gathering “one-sided testimony that only supported the idea of opening Ohio as soon as possible.”

In a statement released last week, Rep. Terrence Upchurch (D-Cleveland), vice chair of the Ohio 2020 Economic Recovery Task Force, voiced frustration with the fact that the committee hasn’t heard from “minorities or women.”

“We were under the impression by the majority that this task-force would be a bipartisan, collaborative effort to map out next steps for the General Assembly’s response to the COVID-19 crisis in Ohio,” he said. “However, it became almost immediately apparent from the agenda and the chosen speakers that this task force was actually designed to gather one-sided testimony that only supported the idea of opening Ohio as soon as possible. This was never a democratic process.”

Read More

‘You’re Getting a Paycheck, We’re Not,’ Protestors Say of DeWine, Acton

Approximately 150 people gathered outside the State Capitol in Columbus Monday to tell Gov. Mike DeWIne and Health Department Director Amy Action that it’s past time to reopen the state.

Tom Zawistowski, president of Ohio Tea Party group We the People Convention, estimated the attendance, in an interview with The Ohio Star. This was the second such protest since last Thursday.

Many of the protestors called out, “You’re getting a paycheck, we’re not,” Zawistowski said.

Read More

Minnesota Group Wants Unemployment Insurance for Illegal Immigrants

A progressive group in Minnesota wants state and national lawmakers to pass a “stronger unemployment insurance package” that includes benefits for illegal immigrants.

TakeAction Minnesota, a progressive community organizing group, released a list of policy proposals that it would like to see included in any stimulus package passed in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Read More

Economist Recommends Ohio Use Federal Stimulus to Bolster Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund

Following Ohio’s shocking unemployment rate increase of 2,565 percent, one economist says the COVID-19 coronavirus’ economic impact will be “long lasting” and provides a list of recommendations.

Read More

DeWine May Cut State Budgets by Up to 20 Percent, But Public Sector Cannot Match Loss of Private Sector’s 188K Lost Jobs

Even as Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine orders state departments to cut up to 20 percent of their budgets and implement a hiring freeze, state workers are not feeling the coronavirus economic burn like the private sector.

Read More

Commentary: Senate Paves Road to Reopening the Economy with Coronavirus Relief Bill, But When Will States Reopen Schools?

By a vote of 96-0, the U.S. Senate has passed a $2.2 trillion legislative package, by far the largest in U.S. history, to keep tens of millions of Americans on payroll and expand unemployment benefits to those who are laid off while the country waits out the deadly Chinese coronavirus that poses additional risk to seniors and those with underlying conditions.

That way, when the virus passes, those businesses, particularly the 30 million small businesses that are struggling most of all right now, but also critical industries, will be able to rapidly reopen and we can get back to our lives.

Read More

Ohio Hit Harder with Unemployment Than Other States

Ohio was hit harder with unemployment filings than other states during the immediate aftermath of the coronavirus.

The U.S. Department of Labor reported Thursday that 3.28 million claims were filed in the week that ended March 21. That marked an increase of more than 3 million claims over the week prior, when 282,000 claims were filed, The Ohio Star reported.

Ohio’s claims totaled 187,784, the Cincinnati Enquirer said, up from 7,046 the previous week.

Read More

Minnesota Had 116,000 New Unemployment Claims Last Week

Minnesota has seen 182,000 workers apply for unemployment insurance since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Commissioner Steve Grove said Thursday.

Read More

Michigan Unemployment Claims Reach Record High

The economic fallout caused by the coronavirus pandemic includes massive unemployment caused by government-mandated shutdowns of businesses throughout Michigan.

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) reported 129,298 Michigan employees filed unemployment claims last week. Government figures indicate that number has increased from nearly 5,338 people filing unemployment claims reported March 14, a difference of more than 123,960.

Read More