Florida jobless claims below 6,000 last week
First-time unemployment claims in Florida continue to roll in at a pre-pandemic pace.
The U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday estimated 5,814 initial claims were filed in Florida during the week that ended Sept. 4, down from a revised count of 9,700 during the week that ended Aug. 28. The federal agency initially estimated 8,270 first-time unemployment applications were submitted in Florida in the week ending Aug. 28. The labor department also estimated 310,000 claims were filed nationally last week, down 35,000 from the week ending Aug. 28.
The latest figures take into account the final week of two federal unemployment-assistance programs --- the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation programs --- that ended Monday. Florida also withdrew from two other federal assistance programs --- the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and Mixed Earners Unemployment Compensation programs --- in June and reimplemented a “work search” requirement for people seeking unemployment benefits.
State officials said the moves were aimed at spurring people to return to the workforce. Since the start of July, the state has averaged 7,682 first-time claims a week. From mid-May through the end of June, Florida averaged 8,195 first-time claims a week.
The state had a July unemployment rate of 5.1 percent and will post August unemployment figures on Sept. 17. The state marks March 15, 2020 as the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of unemployment claims. Claims went from 6,463 during the week that ended March 14, 2020, to 74,313 the following week as the pandemic caused businesses to shut down or scale back.