New data released from the Department of Labor show more people last week field for unemployment benefits than the previous week, sparking a trend that is worrying some economists.
“There is a concern the numbers on COVID will only get worse before they get better and that means a risk to the economy,” says Mark Hamrick, senior economist at Bankrate.com.
Last week 853,000 Americans filed claims, an increase of 137,000 from the previous week. In Florida, 25,000 filed new claims, up 1,900 from the previous week.
“Things are getting a little hectic with unemployment as far as more people losing their jobs,” says Amit Knightly, a West Palm Beach DJ who also hosts a radio show, Unemployment Woes.
“A stimulus bill I believe is needed because we still have a lot of families struggling,” Knightly says.
Congress is currently debating a new stimulus package as a December 26th deadline approaches that will end federal pandemic relief for the unemployed.
“We understand that we’re still in a historically elevated period of unemployment, the risk is that it persists and the longer we wait to do something about it the bigger the problem becomes the bigger the hole one,” Hamrick says.
“A lot of things have changed, a lot of people have lost trust, a lot of people have lost hope and the only thing to keep them up is a stimulus bill,” says Knightly.