LINCOLN - The Nebraska Department of Labor (NDOL) announced today that there were 3,189 new regular unemployment claims filed last week, an increase of 21.2 percent over the prior week when 2,630 claims were filed. There were 1,179 new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims filed last week compared to 1,150 the prior week, an increase of 2.5 percent. The highest number of new claims filed during the pandemic was 26,539 claims during the week ending April 4. Spreadsheets showing regular and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims data are available here and will be updated every Thursday.
Continued Unemployment Claims
There were 30,916 continued weeks of regular unemployment claimed last week, a decrease over the prior week, when 37,010 claims were filed. There were 24,478 continued weeks of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claimed last week, up slightly compared to 24,184 the prior week.
Continued weeks refer to the individual weeks of unemployment claimed after a person applies for benefits. Weekly certifications are required in order to claim continued weeks of unemployment and receive payment. Before the coronavirus pandemic, the highest number of continued weeks was in the second week of 2010 when there were 26,075 continued weeks claimed.
Of the top 50 occupations with the highest number of continued claims, 34 have declined by 30 percent or more since the week ending May 9, corresponding with the loosening of the direct health measures. Forty-six out of the top 50 have declined by 20 percent or more. The top continued claim occupations for the week ending August 8 (the most recent week for which occupation data is available) were waiters and waitresses (1,534), cashiers (1,514), and customer service representatives (1,338).
Benefit Payments and Claim Processing
NDOL paid a total of $12.1 million in benefits last week, including regular, PUA, and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), which provides an additional 13 week of benefits to individuals who have exhausted their regular benefits. Regular and PUA benefits paid each week can be found here. NDOL has paid over 128,000 individuals during the pandemic.
Benefits paid since March 29:
Regular UI: $264,692,741
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance
(gig workers/self-employed): $51,396,619
Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation
($600/weekly UI benefits to eligible claimants): $687,059,335
Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation
(extends unemployment benefits by up to 13 weeks): $6,353,521
Top industries with highest initial claims for week ending August 15
#1 Accommodation and Food Services: 376
#2 Retail Trade: 342
#3 Health Care and Social Assistance: 302
#4 Administrative and Support: 295
Top three occupations filing an initial claim for week ending August 15
#1 Cashiers: 100
#2 Waiters and Waitresses: 72
#3 Customer Service Representatives: 66