In a pandemic first, US jobless claims fall below 1 million


Washington

The number of laid-off workers applying for unemployment aid fell below 1 million last week for the first time since the pandemic intensified five months ago, yet it still remains at a high level. The viral pandemic keeps forcing layoffs just as the expiration of a $600-a-week federal jobless benefit has deepened the hardships for many.

The Labor Department said applications fell to 963,000, the second straight drop, from 1.2 million the previous week. The...