UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS

Why have requests for unemployment payments decreased in New York?

New York State has seen its unemployment rate drop as the vaccination rate increases in the state and restrictions eased, now fully lifted as of 15 June.

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Why have requests for unemployment payments decreased in New York?
ANGELA WEISS AFP

New York State lifted all covid-19 restrictions last month when the state hit the 70 percent target for all adults over 18 with at least one dose of covid-19 vaccine. With businesses able to operate more freely and residents moving around the state is making a gradual return to normal.

The US economy likewise has been recovering, adding 850,000 new workers in June, the economy has been averaging 567,000 new jobs to the workforce over the past three months. The biggest gains have been in the leisure and hospitality sector from a growing appetite for travel, dining out, celebrations and entertainment.

New York unemployment trending down

New York State has seen big gains in employment through the spring. After peaking in April last year hitting 16.2 percent with 6 million claims, the state began to make up lost ground dropping to 8.7 percent in November. That recovery stagnated in the fall hovering below nine percent until March when vaccination rates began to climb. Currently the state is at 7.8 percent unemployment rate, still double the level prior to the pandemic.

New York City looking to get tourist back

Although New York City will have to wait a while longer for the lucrative foreign travelers to return, the city’s tourism promotion agency, NYC & Company, announced a $30 million campaign using federal covid-18 relief funds to get tourists to come back. The agency is developing a campaign to attract 10 million domestic visitors through the summer, hoping to change the perception of the Big Apple as the epicenter of the US covid-19 pandemic.

The unemployment rate remains high in New York City at 10.9 percent compared to the surrounding areas, which is almost half that of the city. But that is much better than last April when the city lost 900,000 jobs over night rocketing the unemployment rate to 20 percent. However, the city is doing better than other major metropolitan areas a reverse from last year.

Stil it is expected it could take months for the economy and unemployment in the city to fully recover.