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Fewer jobless benefit claims filed in Utah last week, but still at an extremely high rate

Claims fall below record high in 2013
Posted at 10:18 AM, Jun 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-04 12:18:13-04

SALT LAKE CITY — The number of new claims filed for unemployment benefits in Utah was 4,996 for the week of May 24-30, 2020.

There were 93,276 weekly claims filed during that same week. A total of $25,463,189 was paid in traditional unemployment benefits. An additional $47,995,870 of the $600 weekly stimulus was paid out to claimants, as well as $1,235,237 in federally funded extended benefit payments, for a total of $74,694,296 in unemployment benefits for the week. A total of 1,561 new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance claims were submitted.

The number of individuals who ended their unemployment insurance claim on May 23, 2020 was 7,707. A total of 9,772 ended their claim during the previous week. As the state continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, this number will help demonstrate the number of individuals no longer accessing unemployment benefits.

“For the first time since the start of the pandemic, the number of new weekly claims fell just below the state’s previous record high of 5,300 claims in 2013,” said Kevin Burt, Unemployment Insurance Division director for the Utah Department of Workforce Services. “The consistent decreases continue to be encouraging. With restrictions lifting, and economic activity gradually returning, it is important to remember these benefits are temporary and refusals to return to work will result in a loss of benefits for most who are not determined to be at high risk for the illness.”

The three industries that saw the highest percentage of claims this week were:

  • Office and Administrative Support (13.2%)
  • Production Occupations (8.7%)
  • Management Occupations (8.6%)

The five counties in Utah that had the highest number of individuals file new unemployment insurance claims were:

  • Salt Lake (37%)
  • Utah (19%)
  • Davis (8%)
  • Weber (7.6%)
  • Washington (3.7%)