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New, continuing unemployment claims climb slightly in Idaho

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BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Idaho's unemployment claims climbed slightly, with 3,919 people filing for new unemployment benefits during the last week of October - about 57 more than the previous week, officials said Thursday.

Continued claims for benefits also ticked up slightly for the first time since early May, increasing by 1% in the week ending Oct. 31, the Idaho Department of Labor said.

October's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate wasn't available yet, but September's adjusted rate was 6.1%.

More than 8,100 people requested continued unemployment benefits in the last week of October, officials said. That compares to nearly 72,000 at the start of May.

Over the past four weeks, new claims increased by an average of 7%.

Idaho claims hit a record high in late March, when thousands of people found themselves unemployed as businesses temporarily closed to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

The state has received more than 232,000 applications for unemployment since the week ending March 14, though the number of new claims filed on a weekly basis dropped sharply in the subsequent months.

The food service and hospitality industries were especially hard hit by the pandemic, according to the Labor Department's statistics.

More than $907 million in benefits has been paid to Idaho residents laid off because of the coronavirus since the pandemic began. More than $200 million came from the state's regular unemployment benefits insurance program, with the rest coming primarily from federal emergency funds.

Article Topic Follows: Idaho

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