World Socialist Web Site wsws.org 13 Mar, 2021 02:30 am

Nearly 10 million US jobs lost one year after start of the pandemic

Nearly 10 million US jobs lost one year after start of the pandemic
The economic crisis triggered by the pandemic is still raging as deaths continue to pile up while governments dither over paltry economic relief packages that pale in comparison to the level of social need.

With the one-year anniversary since the start of the economic crisis triggered by the coronavirus pandemic fast approaching, new claims for unemployment benefits continued for yet another week at the historically unprecedented level of over 700,000.There are still over 20 million workers receiving jobless relief of some kind, including 4 million receiving traditional state unemployment benefits and others on emergency pandemic aid authorized by Congress.New claims for unemployment benefits fell to 712,000 for the week ending March 6, a drop of 42,000 from the previous week, but still a very high number compared to a typical week in 2019 when between 200,000 and 300,000 would apply.PUA was an emergency program enacted by Congress to help the self-employed and others not covered by regular state unemployment benefits.

The weekly unemployment claims report came just as President Biden signed into law the coronavirus relief bill, which calls for an additional $300 per person weekly supplement to unemployment benefits and a one-time $1,400 payment to most US residents.Even when one figures in the exemption Congress gave to tax payments on the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits and an expanded child tax credit, the COVID relief provided by Congress is far from adequate to make good the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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