Bleak jobs news: Many industry sectors see hike in unemployment

Initial unemployment claims continued to rise as the calendar flipped to 2021 as many industry sectors saw some growth in unemployment.

During the week spanning Dec. 27 to Jan. 2, there were a total of 29,651 initial regular unemployment claims, which was a 54.5 percent increase over the prior week. Claims for all unemployment benefit categories also rose 12.1 percent from the prior week, according to the Employment Security Department.

Unlike last week, where increases were driven mainly by season layoffs in construction and accomodation and food services, the surge in new and restarted claims came from employees across every industry sector. Some new initial claims, especially in the retail trade industry, are at least partly associated with post-holiday layoffs.

The industry sectors with the higher number of initial claims during the week ending Jan. 2 were construction (4,941 claims, up 48 percent); accommodation and food services (3,096 claims, up 48 percent); retail trade (2,230 claims, up 53 percent); health care and social assistance (2,208 claims, up 40 percent); and manufacturing (2,091 claims, up 51 percent).

The most affected occupations were construction and extraction (5,117 claims, up 48 percent); food preparation and serving (3,216 claims, up 49 percent); management (3,057 claims, 74 percent); transportation and material moving (2,726 claims, up 61 percent); office and administrative support (2,076 claims, up 56 percent).

Initial claims are now 201 percent above the same week in 2019.

Like many of the state’s counties, Kitsap saw a large increase in initial claims, going from 465 the week prior to 741. King County saw an increase of 58 percent, while some of the state’s other large counties saw large spikes as well. Pierce County had a 59 percent increase, Snohomish County went up 62 percent, Spokane County was up 64 percent and Yakima County went up 46 percent.

Over $182.7 million was paid to 316,175 individual claims in the week ending Jan. 2.

The ESD has now paid out more than $13.4 billion in unemployment benefits to Washington residents since the pandemic began. In addition, the state has paid $49.9 million in Pandemic Relief Payment — a one-time payment of $550 sent to some recipients of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance benefits.

More in Business

Soul-crushing COVID-19

A lonely, difficult - and educational - journey these 12 months for Kitsap’s small-business owners

State delays hearing on That One Place fines

That One Place levied $132,000 fine for violating COVID-19 proclamation

Blank Unemployment Benefits form
Initial jobless claims fall slightly in last week of January

Unemployment claims were up in the final week of January, but initial… Continue reading

Blank Unemployment Benefits form
Initial jobless claims fall again in late January

Initial unemployment claims in Washington and Kitsap County fell by 14 percent… Continue reading

Port Orchard restaurant at in-dining standoff with state over COVID restrictions

State attorney general seeking temporary restraining order against That One Place

Blank Unemployment Benefits form
Bleak jobs news: Many industry sectors see hike in unemployment

Initial unemployment claims continued to rise as the calendar flipped to 2021… Continue reading

Sound offers grants to help local businesses with advertising

EVERETT — Sound Publishing has launched a local stimulus program to help… Continue reading

That One Place penalized by state board for COVID-19 infractions

Port Orchard restaurant has its liquor license suspended for 180 days

Fred Meyer store reports having nine employees with COVID-19

Business says it is taking ‘extensive measures’ to keep store safe for employees, shoppers

Sweet memories greet visitors to Port Orchard’s The Candy Shoppe

Nostalgic candies and seasonal fudge smells are part of store’s alluring treats

Gingerbread House contest, Senior Giving Tree at Port Orchard Market

… and Santa will visit downtown Port Orchard location later in December

Rainy Daze is hosting a Pints for Purpose Event Nov. 28 raising money for Fishline's Christmas Child program.
Fundraiser Saturday for Christmas Child Program

Grab a pint and do some good at Rainy Daze Brewing in… Continue reading