Historic unemployment filings occurred last week. We are in unchartered territory. It is a time that we are going to have to believe in society.
More than 3 million Americans filed for unemployment claims last week
More than 3 million Americans filed for unemployment last week, according to new data released Thursday.
The massive spike in new jobless claims comes as nationwide lockdowns to halt the spread of the coronavirus pandemic have kept Americans from their workplaces, grinding businesses to a halt and forcing many companies to shutter or to lay off staff.
Just 282,000 people filed for unemployment in the previous week, before lockdowns began, according to the Department of Labor.
Thursday's numbers are just "the tip of the iceberg," said Diane Swonk, chief economist at Grant Thornton, noting that these figures do not even include data from this week.
"Businesses cannot plan for this kind of sudden stop of cash flow," she told NBC News. "This isn’t a 'rainy day fund' situation."
California alone is seeing jobless claims of more than 100,000 a day, Gov. Gavin Newson said Wednesday.
“We just passed the 1 million mark, in terms of the number of claims, just since March 13,” Newsom said.