"Businesses are hunkering down and sheltering in place".
A view of Bourbon Street amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S. March 25, 2020.
Preliminary claims for unemployment advantages rose 3,001,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.28 million within the week ending March 21, eclipsing the earlier record of 695,000 set in 1982, the Labor Division stated. Amid continued market turmoil, both the Federal Reserve and the US Congress have advanced their initial economic policy responses.
The models "are based on prior experience and we have no prior experience of an economy that has largely been shut down", said Rubeela Farooqi of High Frequency Economics.
There were reports of many states saying their employment websites crashed because of heavy traffic.
Economists have warned of a massive increase in the unemployment rate, but estimates were around 1.5 million, which, as some have warned, was too optimistic. Put another away, an average of more than 19,000 people were putting in a claim each day last week.
The mandated closures prompted business owners ranging from chain clothing stores to local restaurants to lay off employees.
Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Macroeconomics correctly predicted what he called a "horrific" result, noting that NY state alone had received 1.7 million calls about benefits.
All told, experts now estimate the USA unemployment has risen to 5.5% over the last week, a level not seen since 2015.
And that's just the number of people signing up for the first week of jobless assistance.
Nationwide, COVID-19 has infected more than 53,000 people and killed at least 720 with World Health Organization officials warning the United States could become the global epicenter of the pandemic, which broke out late a year ago in China. "So this is not the time to debate a bill that passed with every single vote".
For example, on Saturday, Scott ordered all close-contact businesses - spas, barbershops, nail and hair salons, gyms, fitness centers and tattoo parlors - to close their doors. But that money will take time to be disbursed.
"We would expect numbers from these states and others to climb in coming weeks, particularly with the number of lockdowns increasing across the U.S.", he added.