Global RiskNews Briefs

Virus pushes US unemployment toward highest since Depression

The United State’s unemployment levels are nearing those seen during the Great Depression of the 1930s. Currently, 1 in 6 American workers have been temporarily laid off due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, according to new data released on Thursday. The deepening economic crisis caused Congress to pass a $500 billion spending package that aims to aid small businesses and hospitals under financial stress.

More than 4.4 million Americans who have been laid off due to the pandemic and social distancing efforts applied for unemployment benefits last week, according to the government. This raises the total number of Americans who have applied for unemployment aid to 26 million people, which represents the population of the 10 biggest cities in the US combines. The economic crisis has raised criticism over when to ease the shutdowns of factories and businesses.

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