New jobless claims in the state dropped last week as fewer layoffs occurred in the accommodation and food services sector, according to the Washington State Employment Security Department.
Laid-off workers in the state filed 12,958 new jobless claims the week ending Feb. 27, a 7.7% decrease compared with the week before, the department reported Thursday.
Continued claims in all unemployment categories declined slightly, with 459,328 benefit applications filed in the week ending Feb. 27, a 0.6% decrease from the prior week.
Workers in the construction sector filed the greatest number of new claims last week with 2,441, followed by those in the retail trade sector with 1,198. The health care and social assistance sector saw 1,098 claims filed, and the accommodation and food services sector had 1,052.
The ESD paid more than $255 million in benefits last week. It has paid $15.3 billion in benefits since the pandemic began to affect the state’s economy in March 2020.
Laid-off workers in Spokane County filed 875 initial unemployment claims the week ending Feb. 27, a slight increase compared with the 870 claims filed the week before, according to the employment security department.
In the county, 384 new claims last week came from undisclosed professions, which have not yet been categorized into specific employment sectors.
Specialty trade contractors filed 103 new jobless claims in the county last week. Workers in food services and drinking places sector filed 62, and those in the social assistance sector filed 41.Amy Edelen can be reached at (509) 459-5581 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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