While some of the jobs lost in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic have since returned, it appears the job market is in decline again. More than 850,000 Americans filed for initial jobless assistance during the week ending Dec. 5. And nearly 5.8 million Americans received unemployment benefits after their initial claim in the week ending Nov. 28 — up nearly a quarter of a million people compared to the week before, marking the first increase since August.
Much like the coronavirus itself, rises in unemployment claims are more common in certain parts of the country. Every state but one has at least one major metro area where there were fewer people working in October — the most recent month for which data is available — compared to February, the month before President Donald Trump declared a state of emergency.
To identify the American cities losing the most jobs, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the percentage change in total employment from February to October 2020 in U.S. metro areas, using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Many of the cities on this list are tourist destinations that had previously relied on visitors to fuel their economy. With health officials discouraging travel and large events being canceled worldwide, tourism has ground to a halt. Event staff, hotel workers, restaurant workers and others in the industry have lost jobs at least in part because of the decline in tourism. These are the latest COVID-19 travel restrictions in every state.
Delaware, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont have only one metro area, and as a result, the metro area listed for each of these states as losing the most jobs is listed by default. Alaska has just two metro areas, both of which have actually added jobs amid the pandemic. As a result, neither metro area was included for the state.