Why long-term unemployment starts at 27 weeks

By: Andie Corban and Kai Ryssdal,  Marketplace
Thu, 05/20/2021

Another 444,000 Americans filed first-time unemployment claims last week, the lowest level since March 14, 2020. At the opposite end of the unemployment spectrum, 4.2 million Americans are long-term unemployed, meaning they’ve been jobless for 27 weeks or more, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

“When people are unemployed for an extended period of time, their financial resources tend to run out,” said Francine Blau, an economics professor at Cornell University. “The psychological impact on their confidence and self-esteem is greater.”

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