Washington: US employers have cut a staggering 20.5 million jobs in April amid the COVID-19 pandemic, erasing a decade of job gains since the global financial crisis and pushing the unemployment rate to a record 14.7 per cent, which is the highest level since the Great Depression.
In April, the unemployment rate surged by 10.3 percentage points to 14.7 per cent, the largest over-the-month increase in the history of the series dating back to January 1948, Xinhua news agency quoted the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as saying in a report on Friday.
Since mid-March, numerous US states have rolled out “stay-at-home” policies and shut down nonessential businesses in a bid to slow the spread of the virus, leading companies to cut millions of jobs in weeks.
Government employment also dropped by 980,000 in April, according to the Bureau. Employment in local government was down by 801,000, in part reflecting school closures.