1.3 Million New Jobless Claims Last Week; Media Frames Number Differently

Headline Roundup July 9th, 2020

According to the most recent statistics from the Department of Labor, roughly 1.3 million new unemployment claims were filed last week.

Coverage from right-rated outlets mostly framed the report as signs of the economy getting better, with less new Americans filing for unemployment and claims falling below the 1.4 million that were reportedly expected. Coverage from left- and center-rated sources concentrated more on persistent layoffs and the overall severity of the COVID-19 coronavirus' impact on the economy and jobs. Some left-rated voices focused specifically on the now 16-week streak of jobless filings surpassing 1 million, and the roughly 50 million unemployment claims filed since the pandemic's outset.

1.3 Million New Jobless Claims Last Week; Media Frames Number Differently

From the Left
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When Americans lose their jobs, they file for unemployment benefits, and the government has kept track of the number of these filings every week since 1967. Up until fairly recently, with a healthy domestic job market, the weekly tally has been about 210,000.

But as we've discussed, looking at historical data, we know what things look like when there's an economic crisis. In early 2009, for example, near the height of the Great Recession, initial jobless claims reached 665,000 -- roughly triple the totals from, say, a couple of months...

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From the Center
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WASHINGTON (AP) — More than 1.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week, a historically high pace that shows that many employers are still laying people off in the face of a resurgent coronavirus.

The persistently elevated level of layoffs are occurring as a spike in virus cases has forced six states to reverse their move to reopen businesses. Those six — Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Michigan and Texas — make up one-third of the U.S. economy. Fifteen other states have suspended their re-openings. Collectively, the pullback has stalled...

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From the Right
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Jobless claims for the past week were lower than economists had predicted as workers begin returning to their jobs, according to data from the Labor Department shows.

The total number for jobless claims for the week ending in July 4 was 1.3 million, according to the Labor Department data, which is 99,000 fewer claims than the previous week. Economists surveyed by Down Jones had predicted 1.39 million jobless claims, according to CNBC.

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