In Washington 5,357 filed initial claims for regular unemployment insurance last week

By: Kriss Sjoblom
12:07 pm
August 26, 2021

Yesterday the state Employment Security Department (ESD) gave its weekly report on unemployment insurance claims.

ESD reported a total of 7,440 initial claims for unemployment insurance during the week ending August 21. Of this total, 5,357 initial claims were filed under the regular state unemployment insurance program; 1,369 claims were under the federal pandemic unemployment assistance program, which covers self-employed persons, independent contractors and part-time workers; and 534 claims were filed under the federal pandemic unemployment compensation program, which adds 13 weeks to the maximum term of benefits.

The number of new claims for regular unemployment insurance is a decrease of 171 from the number of claims filed during the preceding week.

The four-week moving average of regular initial claims is 5,306, up 201 from the preceding week. I estimate that the seasonally adjusted 4-week average of regular initial claims was 6,991, up from 6,706 the preceding week.

ESD reports that continuing claims for unemployment insurance totaled 265,118 in the most recent week, which is 9,868 less than the number reported last week. This chart shows continuing filed by week, with claims under the federal PUA and PEUC programs shown separately from those under the regular state program. For the week, regular state continuing claims fell by 2,659, while federal continuing claims fell by 7,209.

ESD notes,

Federal pandemic benefits programs, including PUA and PEUC as well as the additional $300 per week, are set to expire [following] the week ending Sept. 4, 2021.

Continuing claims are thus on course to fall precipitously in mid-September. Since the last week in June, ESD reports, 246,500 distinct individuals filed at least one continuing claim under the federal programs. The Department estimates that 41,500 of these individuals will be eligible to file claims under the regular state program when the federal programs end, while 205,000 will run out of benefits. More details are available in the presentation of ESD’s Scott Michael to the Unemployment Insurance Advisory Committee on August 11. (TVW video here. Michael’s presentation begins at 27:45.)

ESD’s weekly UI claims press release is posted here.

Categories: Economy.