Tenn. unemployment claims increase by nearly 20 fold over previous week

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) — The state of Tennessee experienced an unprecedented spike in new initial unemployment claims according to data released Thursday by the United States Department of Labor.

For the week ending March 21, 2020, Tennesseans filed 39,096 initial claims for unemployment insurance benefits. The week prior, the state received 2,702 new unemployment claims. The latest figure represents a nearly 20 fold increase in week-to-week claims.

Nationwide, Americans filed 3,283,000 new unemployment claims, an increase of 3,001,000 from the previous week's revised national level.

Week ending March 21, 2020, at a glance:
New: 39,096
Last week: 2,702
Difference: 36,394

The maximum weekly unemployment benefit in Tennessee is $275 before the deduction of federal taxes.

The department that processes unemployment claims says they are training new employees to help process the claims and are exploring other methods to increase their workforce.

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