Weekly jobless claims in Spokane County drop to lowest level since September 2019

<p><p>Weekly jobless claims in Spokane County last week dropped to the lowest level since September 2019, according to data from the Washington state Employment Security Department.</p></p><p><p>Laid-off workers in the county filed 293 new claims during the week ending Sept. 11, a 12% decrease compared with 333 claims filed the week before, the department reported Thursday.</p></p><p><p>For comparison, workers filed 290 claims the third week of September 2019.</p></p><p><p>New unemployment claims in the state dropped to 4,860 in the week ending Sept. 11, a 6.6% decrease in applications compared with 5,205 from the week before, according to the ESD.</p></p><p><p>The drop in new unemployment claims coincided with the Sept. 4 expiration of federal pandemic benefit programs that provided an additional $300 a week in benefits.</p></p><p><p>Continued claims in all unemployment categories declined 4.8%, with 245,345 applications filed last week.</p></p><p><p>Fewer layoffs in construction, health care and social assistance sectors contributed to a decrease of 345 new claims in the week ending Sept. 11, compared with the week before.</p></p><p><p><span class=”print_trim”><em>Amy Edelen can be reached at (509) 459-5581 or at amye@spokesman.com.</em></span></p></p>