Special Report

Every State's Unemployment Claims Since COVID-19 Shut the Economy Down


To determine the number of unemployment claims in each state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the total initial unemployment claims for each week from the week ending March 21, 2020, through the week ending May 9, 2020 — a total of eight weeks. Unemployment claims figures are not seasonally adjusted and are from the Department of Labor. 

To calculate unemployment claims from March 15 through May 9 as a share of each state’s labor force, we used the total unadjusted number of claims over that eight-week period and the total size of the labor force (not seasonally adjusted) as of February 2020 from the Bureau of Labor Statistics Current Employment Statistics. 

The identification of high-risk industries comes from a March 2020 paper, “COVID-19: A Fiscal Stimulus Plan,” published by Moody’s Analytics, an economic research company. Employment figures by industry comes from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages and are annual estimates for 2018.

The projected unemployment rate by state for July 2020 comes from a report published on April 1 by the Economic Policy Institute, a nonpartisan, nonprofit think tank.