New data shows that new jobless claims have seen an increase for three weeks in a row throughout September.
This follows closely after the largest cutoff to federal unemployment benefits in history, where nearly 3 million Americans saw their weekly unemployment checks be cut by $300.
In the week ending September 25, unemployment claims went up 11,000 from the previous week to a total 362,000.
After hitting a pandemic low of 312,000 unemployment claims during the first week of September, economists believed claims would reach to only 330,000.
“The latest increase confounded hopes for improvement,” said Mark Hamrick, senior market analyst at Bankrate.
Although there has been an unexpected growth in new claims, continuing claims still fell from 11.3 million to 5 million during the week ending September 11.
It’s clear that employment has seen a struggle in recent weeks, with the labor market adding just 235,000 jobs last month, its slowest increase since January.
“It still seems that inexorably . . . people who were largely working back in February 2020 [will] get back to work when it’s time to do that; it just may take a longer time,” said Jerome Powell, Chair of the Federal Reserve.