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Another 770,000 workers filed new claims for unemployment benefits during the week ending 13 March, the U.S. Labor Department reported.
For the week, more than 282,000 gig workers and independent contractors also claimed benefits under the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Program (PUA), a support plan separate from regular state unemployment insurance.
In each of the past 52 weeks, new PUA and unemployment claims together have topped one million. In each of those weeks, new claims have exceeded 655,000, the Great Recession’s peak number reached in March 2009.
During the past 12 months, new jobless claims have topped 81.7 million, about seven times the pre-pandemic yearly average of 13 million. 
The high number of claims resulted largely from glitches in state unemployment processes that forced people to file several times to maintain or renew their claims, according to the World Socialist Web Site.
February’s jobs report showed that four million workers have been jobless for six months or longer, making up 41.5 percent of all Americans out of work and approaching the record of 45.5 percent set in April 2010.
Another two million workers have chosen, or been forced to take, early retirement during the pandemic’s economic shutdown, an Oxford Economics study found.
TRENDPOST: In America, once people are no longer collecting unemployment but are still out of work, they are no longer counted by the shyster government as being unemployed. 
For more accurate unemployment numbers, we suggest John Williams’ 

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