US unemployment claims jump 5.2 million last week
22M workers file jobless claims in past 4 week due to impact of coronavirus on economy
More than 5.2 million Americans filed unemployment claims last week as businesses remained mostly closed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the U.S. Labor Department said Thursday.
State-mandated lockdowns bring the number of unemployed Americans to a record 22 million in the past four weeks.
The weekly report is the fourth straight showing more than 1 million claims.
The figures were revealed after U.S. President Donald Trump pushed recently for the country to prepare plans to reopen portions of the economy, declaring his "total" authority over the matter. However, he said Monday he would prefer to work with states to reopening.
The states of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Delaware and Massachusetts formed a regional advisory council to plan a "safe and coordinated" reopening.
California, Oregon and Washington also agreed to work on a shared approach for reopening their economies.
The U.S. has surged to lead the world in the number of coronavirus infections and deaths with data from Johns Hopkins University indicating more than 639,700 cases, including nearly 31,000 deaths and roughly 52,700 recoveries.
Overall, the virus has spread to 185 countries, infecting more than 2.1 million patients, and killing more than 138,100 worldwide since it first emerged in the Chinese city of Wuhan late last year. More than 525,800 have recovered.