Initial Ohio unemployment claims continue to increase


FILE—In this file photo from March 14, 2020, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine speaks at a coronavirus news conference at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus, Ohio. DeWine’s statewide address on Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2020 followed record-high numbers of COVID-19 cases and he urged Ohioans to take the coronavirus more seriously. The speech included threats to close bars, restaurants and gyms for a second time. (Doral Chenoweth/The Columbus Dispatch via AP, File)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Initial claims for unemployment compensation continue to rise along with Ohio’s number of coronavirus cases, the state reported Friday.

For the week ending Nov. 7, 21,868 Ohioans filed claims for unemployment, according to the Department of Job and Family Services. That’s a 3% increase from the previous week when 21,263 Ohioans filed claims but nearly 20% higher than October figures.

The state also said Ohioans filed 260,855 continuing unemployment claims last week, a figure considered a more reliable indicator of economic strength and one that has slowly decreased over the past few weeks.

As coronavirus cases soar in Ohio, Gov. Mike DeWine has warned he could order another shutdown of restaurants and bars. The industry has criticized the announcement, saying there’s no evidence they are a cause of spread and that such a move would be economically devastating.

The 7-day rolling average of daily new cases in Ohio has risen over the past two weeks from 2,644 new cases per day on Oct. 29 to 5,612 new cases per day on Nov. 12, according to an Associated Press analysis of data provided by The COVID Tracking Project. The state saw another single-day record high of 8,071 on Friday.

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