Va. new jobless claims rise slightly
VEC reported 2,570 initial claims but a drop 13,500 in continued claims
Virginia’s new unemployment claims rose by about 30% last week, the Virginia Employment Commission reported Thursday, but remained about 8,000 lower than the number filed two weeks ago.
For the filing week ending Oct. 23, Virginians filed 2,570 initial claims, an increase of 603 claims from the week before. Continued claims totaled 44,840, a decrease of 13,581 from the previous week.
Compared to the same week last year, initial claims were about 79% lower than the 12,352 recorded then. Continued claims were 65% lower than the 127,621 from the comparable week last year.
People receiving unemployment benefits through the VEC must file weekly unemployment claims in order to continue receiving benefits.
The majority of claimants who filed for benefits last week reported being in these industries: health care and social assistance; retail; accommodation/food service; and administrative and waste services.
The VEC has been under scrutiny this year for backlogs of claims and, most recently, for delaying the launch of its updated claims system from Oct. 1 to November. VEC is shutting down the current system at 5 p.m. on Monday to implement the new system, a process that it expects to take several days, WDVM reported.
Nationwide, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims last week was 281,000, a decrease of 10,000 from the previous week’s revised level and the lowest level for initial claims since the 256,000 reported on March 14, 2020. There were 732,533 initial claims in the comparable week in 2020.