Tooele Transcript Bulletin – News in Tooele, Utah

December 1, 2020
Unemployment benefit claims continue their steady decline

Although declining, claims still ahead of previous years 

The number of new claims and continued claims for unemployment benefits in Utah for the week ending Nov. 21 dropped from the previous week, continuing a declining trend since an Aril/May pandemic peak, according to a report released last week by the Department of Workforce Services.

New unemployment claims for the week of Nov. 15-20, 2020 totaled 4,470 compared to 4,617 new claims filed for the previous week. That’s a 3.2% decline.

The 2019 weekly average of new unemployment claims was 1,131.

Continued claims for the same time period dropped from 28,168 to 28,002, a 0.6% drop. The 2019 weekly average of continued unemployment claims was 8,856.

“The need for unemployment insurance continues, as more than 4,000 Utahns are applying for the benefit weekly,” said Kevin Burt, Unemployment Insurance Division director for the Department of Workforce Services. “While new claims are high compared to the historically low 2019 average, they remain significantly lower than the historically high volume seen early in the pandemic, when the average new claims were over 28,000 filed per week.”

For Tooele County the four week average of new unemployment claims was 46 for the week ending Oct. 4, according to the most recent data from the Department of Workforce Services.

For the same time period in 2018 and 2019, the four week moving average of new unemployment claims was 33 and 46, respectively.

Between March 15, 2020 and Nov. 21, 2020 the state has paid out a total of $563 million in traditional state unemployment benefits, $54 million in federal pandemic unemployment assistance, and $65 million in extended federal unemployment benefits.

Individual’s whose employment has been impacted by COVID-19, should visit for updated information, which includes help for employees and employers returning to work, according to the Department of Workforce Services.


Tim Gillie

Editor at Tooele Transcript Bulletin
Tim has been writing for the Transcript Bulletin since October 2017. In February 2019 he was named as editor. In addition to being editor, Tim continues to write about Tooele County government, education, business, real estate, housing, politics and the state Legislature.A native of Washington state and a graduate of Central Washington University, Tim became a journalist after a 20 year career with the Boy Scouts of America.

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