Initial Unemployment Claims Increased, Continued Claims Decreased 10/4 to 10/10

During the week of October 4 through October 10, there were 22,324 initial regular unemployment claims (up 44.1 percent from the prior week) and 476,735 total claims for all unemployment benefit categories (down 5.9 percent from the prior week) filed by Washingtonians, according to the Employment Security Department (ESD).  

  • Initial regular claims applications remain at elevated levels and are at 252 percent above last year’s weekly new claims applications.
  • Continued claims for regular Unemployment Insurance, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) initial claims and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) initial claims all decreased over the week.
  • The increases in initial regular unemployment claims were primarily in manufacturing and accommodation and food service. Retail and transportation and warehousing also showed increases.

In the week ending October 10, ESD paid out over $153 million for 318,534 individual claims. Since the crisis began in March, ESD has paid more than $11.6 billion in benefits to over a million Washingtonians.

Unemployment claim typeWeek of October 4-October 10Week of September 27-October 3Week of September 20-September 26
Regular Unemployment Insurance (UI) initial claims22,32415,49617,734
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) initial claims3,9004,1514,439
Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) initial claims8,7369,2118,894
Continued/ongoing weekly claims441,865477,850499,293
Total claims476,735506,708530,360

For more information on current claimants and claims processing progress, please go to the benefits data dashboard on the ESD website. 

Below is a thirty-two week summary of statewide initial claims filed since the start of the COVID-19 crisis:

Week 32 Claims Table October 4 - 10
Statewide initial claims line chart October 4 - 10
Total statewide claims line chart October 4 - 10

Weekly data breakdown

By industry

Industry sectors experiencing the highest number of initial claims during October 4- October 10 were:

  • Accommodation and food services: 2,234 initial regular claims, up 410 (+22 percent) from previous week
  • Manufacturing: 1,687 initial regular claims, up 610 (+57 percent) from previous week
  • Construction: 1,676 initial regular claims, up 32 (+2 percent) from the previous week
  • Retail trade: 1,649 regular initial claims, up 352 (+27 percent) from the previous week
  • Health care and social assistance: 1,532 initial regular claims, up 239 (+18 percent) from the previous week 

By occupation

  • Management occupations:  2,514 regular initial claims, up 697 (+38 percent) from the previous week
  • Food preparation and serving: 2,363 regular initial claims, up 462 (+24 percent) from previous week
  • Construction and extraction occupations:  2,105 regular initial claims, up 296 (+16 percent) from the previous week
  • Transportation and material moving occupations:  1,909 regular initial claims, up 687 (+56 percent) from previous week
  • Office and administrative support occupations:  1,780 regular initial claims, up 424 (+31 percent) from the previous week

By county

King County, the most populous county in the state, saw initial regular claims increase from 4,113 to 5,982 during the week of October 4- October 10, up 45 percent from the week before.

Other counties with the largest number of initial claims during the week were:

  • Pierce County: Initial regular claims filed increased from 1,869 to 2,704 up 45 percent from the week before.
  • Snohomish County: Initial regular claims filed increased from 1,662 to 2,528 up 52 percent from the week before.
  • Spokane County: Initial regular claims filed increased from 854 to 1,375 up 61 percent from the week before.
  • Clark County: Initial regular claims filed increased from 821 to 1,106 up 35 percent from the week before.

SharedWork

For employers looking to avoid layoffs or slowly ramp up re-hiring during this crisis, SharedWork is a great program that can help. You can learn more at esd.wa.gov/SharedWork

   Week of October 4 – October 10Week of September 27 – October 3During height of the recession
Employers with an approved SharedWork plan3,692 employers covering 153,763 employees3,687 employers covering 154,961 employees2,500 employers covering approximately 46,000 employees
Individuals who filed weekly claims for the SharedWork program  48,017    48,950   46,000

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