Jobs

A job application with a pen.
Flazingo / Flickr

More than 470,000 Ohioans have filed unemployment claims in the last two weeks, according to the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services.

Unemployment numbers released Thursday were staggering. "A record 3.28 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits last week as the coronavirus pandemic shut down much of the country," NPR reported.

With very few people booking Airbnbs or taking Uber rides right now, millions of people in the gig economy are seeing their livelihoods abruptly upended.

Take Ed Bell, in San Francisco, who rents out his in-law suite on Airbnb. That is his main source of income — he calls it his "gig" — supplemented by "side hustles" doing consulting work.

Updated at 10:51 a.m. ET

A record 3.28 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits last week as the coronavirus pandemic shut down much of the country. The Labor Department's report for the week ended March 21 was one of the first official indicators of how many people have suddenly been forced out of work nationally.

In the prior report, for the week ended March 14, initial claims totaled 282,000.

Now-Lt. Gov. Jon Husted speaking at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce Government Day in Cincinnati, Ohio on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018.
John Minchillo / Associated Press

The numbers of Ohioans filing for unemployment benefits is rising daily – so quickly, in fact, that the state’s unemployment website was having trouble handling them. Now Ohio is clarifying why it will no longer release the data daily about how many people are filing jobless claims.

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine is seen in February in Cleveland.

Now-Lt. Gov. Jon Husted speaking at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce Government Day in Cincinnati, Ohio on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018.
John Minchillo / Associated Press

Ohio’s unemployment numbers have been staggering. Claims have skyrocketed close to 140,000 in the first four days of the week as bars, restaurants, salons, movie theaters, and a whole host of other businesses close during the pandemic. 

It probably comes as no surprise that unemployment claims in Ohio have skyrocketed this week as businesses continue to temporarily close and lay off workers to try to slow the spread of coronavirus.

Dave Hatfield is a barber and an independent contractor.
Courtesy of Dave Hatfield

Dave Hatfield is a barber, and his wife is a stylist. He says he was hit hard by news that Ohio would close all barbershops, beauty salons, tattoo parlors and spas.

Updated at 10:13 a.m. ET

New claims for unemployment benefits climbed to 281,000 last week as the coronavirus pandemic shuttered businesses and left people out of work, the Labor Department said Thursday. It was the highest level since Sept. 2, 2017, when they totaled 299,000.

The coronavirus pandemic has already started to hit American pocketbooks, with nearly 1 in 5 households experiencing a layoff or a reduction in work hours, according to a new NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll.

As people stay home, avoid crowds and cancel plans to avoid spreading the disease, it's rapidly causing a contraction in economic activity that is hurting a wide range of businesses.

Ohio's Unemployment Rate Holds At 4.1%

Mar 6, 2020
A job application with a pen.
Flazingo / Flickr

Ohio's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady at 4.1% in January, unchanged from the month before.

Updated at 10:31 a.m. ET

Fear of the coronavirus doesn't appear to have infected the U.S. job market yet, despite sending shivers through Wall Street.

A new report from the Labor Department says employers added 273,000 jobs in February — the same as in January. The February increase was about 100,000 more than private analysts had forecast. The unemployment rate dipped to 3.5%, matching a 50-year low.

Job gains for December and January were revised up by a total of 85,000.

Kim Thomas felt drawn to being a home health aide after caring for her own ailing mother. Human dignity, she says, can be simple, like a bath and a favorite snack.

When Thomas first started visiting homes to care for patients, she made $7 an hour. That was in North Carolina about 16 years ago. Her pay inched up over time, to $10.50. To try to make ends meet, she sometimes would work through the night, dozing in patients' homes.

Updated on Feb. 12 at 6:42 p.m. ET

In these final weeks before the 2020 census is rolled out to the entire U.S., the federal government is under pressure to hire and train around a half-million door knockers and other temporary workers by this spring.

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