Another 1.4 million U.S. workers filed for unemployment insurance last week, the Labor Department said Thursday.
This marks the 18th straight week that weekly jobless claims surpassed 1 million. It is also is an increase from last week's 1.3 million figure -- possibly a reflection of some businesses being forced to roll back on reopening plans or even shutter their doors again as coronavirus cases surge.
Last week is the first time in more than three months that the weekly tally rose from the previous week's level.
Approximately 50 million U.S. workers have filed for unemployment insurance at some point since March and at least 16 million workers are still receiving benefits.
The spike in the fresh batch of unemployment filings comes as the extra $600 a week in unemployment insurance through the CARES Act is set to expire at the end of the month, a looming deadline that will bring new financial anxiety to the millions still out of work.
"The rising unemployment claims is a deeply concerning sign as the $600 weekly unemployment benefits soon expire for tens of millions of unemployed Americans," Glassdoor's senior economist Daniel Zhao said Thursday morning.
"The combined effect of rising layoffs, expiring unemployment benefits and escalating coronavirus outbreaks sets up a perfect economic storm that could easily derail the weakening economy’s fledgling recovery," he added.