Unemployment Lines Longest in 18 Years

October 25, 2001(PLANSPONSOR.com) - The number of Americans remaining on the unemployment rolls in the week ending October 13, the latest week for which data is available, surged by 56,000, reaching 3.65 million, its highest level in over 18 years.

In addition, those seeking unemployment benefits for the first time spiked higher by 8,000 in the week ending October 20, according data just released by the Department of Labor. That figure reached 504,000, above analysts expectations.

The four-week moving average, considered a more reliable measure of the unemployment pictures because it irons out weekly volatility, jumped by 12,000, settling at 505,000, a level not reached in over a decade.

States with the largest increases in unemployment benefit claims included Tennessee, Texas, Georgia and Kentucky, while those where initial claims moderated were California, Illinois and New York.