17:19 GMT28 November 2020
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - Some 742,000 Americans filed for jobless benefits last week, about 4 percent higher from the previous week, Labor Department data showed on Thursday, as the US job market continued to struggle nine months into the coronavirus pandemic.

    "In the week ending 14 November, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 742,000," the department said in a news release.

    It revised upward claims in the previous week to 7 November to 711,000. That raised the latest week’s claims by 31,000, or about 4 percent.

    Continuous claims for the latest week showed filings from 6.4 million Americans, lower than the previous week’s number of 6.8 million. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, stood at 4.3 percent, down 0.3 percent from the previous week.

    The United States lost more than 21 million jobs between March and April, at the height of lockdowns forced by the COVID-19. A rebound of 2.5 million jobs was logged in May and 4.8 million in June, before the recovery began slowing. For all of September, there were just 661,000 jobs added.

    The US economy grew by a record 33.1 percent in the third quarter, after shrinking by 31.4 percent in the previous three months and 5 percent in the first quarter. In 2019, the economy grew by 4.1 percent.

    Despite the rebound, the economic outlook for the United States remains dire with a rash of new coronavirus infections reported across a nation with more than 11.5 million COVID-19 cases and over 250,000 fatalities to date. New York City, one of the US hotspots for the coronavirus during the height of the pandemic’s outbreak in March, will close schools from Thursday after reaching a 3 percent test positivity rate over a seven-day rolling average.

    coronavirus, COVID-19, unemployment, US
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