Nationally, 742,000 new unemployment claims filed, up from prior week.

The Department of Labor reports 742,000 initial unemployment claims were filed last week. 

In the week ending November 14, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 742,000, an increase of 31,000 from the previous week’s revised level. The previous week’s level was revised up by 2,000 from 709,000 to 711,000. The 4-week moving average was 742,000, a decrease of 13,750 from the previous week’s revised average. The previous week’s average was revised up by 500 from 755,250 to 755,750.

The advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 4.3 percent for the week ending November 7, a decrease of 0.3 percentage point from the previous week’s unrevised rate.

The Associated Press reports the increase as tied to the pandemic’s surge.

The number of Americans seeking unemployment aid rose last week to 742,000, the first increase in five weeks and a sign that the resurgent viral outbreak is likely slowing the economy and forcing more companies to cut jobs.

The worsening pandemic and the arrival of cold weather could accelerate layoffs in the weeks ahead. Of the roughly 20 million Americans now receiving some form of unemployment benefits, about half will lose those benefits when two federal programs expire at the end of the year.

Across the country, state and local leaders have reimposed restrictions on social and business activity. The Washington Hospitality Association is calling on Gov. Inslee to reconsider his ban on indoor dining. 

Washington Employment Security Department will report claims numbers for the state later today.