A staggering 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits since the coronavirus pandemic forced the shutdown of huge sections of the economy just over six weeks ago. The latest figures from the Labor Department show a further 3.8 million new claims were filed last week, which adds to the 26 million people who applied for aid in the five weeks previous. The number continued to rise despite trillions of dollars in stimulus spending, though the number of people filing for help appears to be slowing each week. Economists expect that the jobless rate in April, set to be published next Friday, will set an unwelcome new high, shattering the post-World War II record of 10.8 percent, which was touched in November 1982.
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