WASHINGTON (AP) — An estimated 2.1 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week despite the gradual reopening of businesses around the country, bringing the running total since the coronavirus shutdowns took hold in mid-March to about 41 million, the government said today.
The figures underscored the continuing damage to businesses and livelihoods from the outbreak that has now killed at least 100,000 people in the U.S.
The U.S. unemployment rate was 14.7% in April, the highest since the Great Depression, and many economists expect it will near 20% in May.
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