Jobless claims rise in DC, Md. and Va., bucking national trend

First-time filings for unemployment benefits rose in Maryland, Virginia and D.C. last week, even as new claims nationwide fell to a pandemic low.

The Department of Labor reports initial claims nationwide totaled 684,000 during the week ending March 20 — 97,000 fewer than the previous week. On an unadjusted basis, excluding seasonal factors, initial unemployment filings totaled 656,789 last week.

The number of Americans currently getting standard unemployment benefits totals 3.87 million, the first time below 4 million since pandemic-related job losses began. That is 264,000 fewer Americans receiving standard unemployment benefits than the previous week.

The U.S. Department of Labor does not distinguish between benefits that voluntarily ended or expired.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits, unadjusted, in the D.C. region during the week ending March 20:

District of Columbia:

Week ending March 20: 1,727

Week ending March 13: 1,289


Week ending March 20: 10,585

Week ending March 13: 8,879


Week ending March 20: 28,232

Week ending March 13: 15,525

The Labor Department publishes weekly unemployment filings by state online.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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