Tennessee unemployment claims reach half a million since mid-March

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A pedestrian walks by The Framing Gallery, closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in Grosse Pointe, Michigan. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – Over a half a million Tennesseans have filed for unemployment benefits over an eight-week period, according to new data from the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce.

The department reported the number of new claims for the week ending May 9 was 29,308. It marks the first week that unemployment claims were below 30,000 since the week ending in March 14 when just 2,702 claims were made. In all 503,888 unemployment claims have been made since March 15.

Source: TN Dept. of Labor & Workforce

The largest number of new claims was in the area of Northern Middle Tennessee, which includes Nashville, where there were 8,694 new claims for the week ending May 9. Greater Memphis had the next highest number of claims with 86,634.

East Tennessee accounted for 4,025 new claims last week, down from 6,303 claims made during the week ending in May 2.

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