New numbers show Granite Staters returning to work, but layoffs are continuing

In latest weekly data, over 6,000 are back on the job but over 2,900 are newly unemployed

Ap 20107683994269Previously unemployed Granite Staters are going back to work at a relatively rapid clip, even though others continue to get laid off at high numbers, showing the volatility of the pandemic-infected economy.

Indeed, last week the number of new unemployment claims in New Hampshire rose slightly to over 2,918 for the week ending Aug. 15, still roughly five times the number of weekly layoffs reported before the economic crisis struck in March. The numbers mirror what is going on nationally, as initial jobless claims went back up to 1.1 million last week after dipping below that the million mark the previous week.

But in New Hampshire, 6,322 people returned to work as of Aug. 8, bringing the number of those still collecting unemployment to dip below 50,000 for the first time since the pandemic struck. That’s a 11.4% decrease, nearly twice the national 6.1% decline.

While jobless Granite Staters no longer get that $600 federal enhancement to their unemployment checks, but they will get half of that, Gov. Chris Sununu announced on Tuesday. Sununu said New Hampshire would be one of the few states that would accept President Trump’s temporary offer of a $300 weekly enhancement after receiving clarification that the required $100 state match could include existing state benefits.

The state would increase the amount received by people who don’t receive as much in their weekly check, which should cost the unemployment trust fund $10 million. Sununu said the amount was worth the several hundred million dollars in benefits from the feds.

The new federal enhancement will be retroactive to Aug. 1, but money will run out in the coming months unless Congress allocates more funds.

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