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Survey: Only 45% of workers in Los Angeles have jobs as unemployment spikes

Economy

The entire economy of California is suffering during the coronavirus lockdown.

Mario Tama/Getty Images

The coronavirus lockdown has caused severe economic hardships for residents of Los Angeles. A new survey found that less than half of people in Los Angeles County still have jobs as unemployment spikes because of the coronavirus pandemic lockdown.

A new survey from the USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research found that only 45% of workers in LA are still employed, compared with 61% in mid-March. Since the COVID-19 outbreak began affecting California, 1.3 million people have lost their jobs in Los Angeles County, according to the USC research.

Only 25 percent of LA residents who lost their jobs since mid-March have received unemployment benefits.

"In LA, there was a certain level of insecurity to begin with, and it has increased a little bit more than it has in the national average," said USC's Jill Darling, survey director for the Understanding America Study.

On Friday, California's Economic Development Department released its latest unemployment report, which showed that LA County's unemployment rate shot up from 4.3% in February to 6.3% in March.

The Department of Labor said that 660,966 Californians filed for unemployment last week, down from the 918,814 the week before. During the last four weeks, there have been 2.7 million processed claims in the most populous US state, according to the Employment Development Department.

California's unemployment rate was 5.3% in March, a 1.4 percentage increase, and the largest spike since 1976.

"We are now in a pandemic-induced recession here in the state of California," Gov. Gavin Newsom said.

The survey was also conducted nationwide, where researchers discovered that the number of employed Americans dropped from 62 percent to 52 percent. The study estimated a US job loss of 25.5 million. Only 36 percent of recently unemployed Americans were receiving benefits, according to the survey.

The survey, which was conducted between April 1–14, had 1,100 respondents from Los Angeles County and 5,500 participants from around the US.

On Thursday, the US Department of Labor reported that 5.245 million Americans filed first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week. Since the beginning of the coronavirus crisis in the US, over 22 million Americans have filed for unemployment in the past five weeks. The historic job losses have erased the 22 million jobs that the US economy added since the Great Recession recovery that began in mid-2009.

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