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Florida’s Unemployment Claims Drop, as More Help Looms

There could be signs of hope in terms of Florida’s unemployment claims.

The number of jobless individuals filing in the state fell by more than 11,000 claims for the week ended June 27, to 84,608.

Meanwhile, the national jobless rate dropped to 11.1 percent last month, before a recent spike in COVID-19 cases.

June’s unemployment rate for Florida will not be reported until later this month. The rate for May was 14.5 percent.

Nationwide, total employment rose nationally by more than 4.8 million people in June, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The number of unemployed people fell by 3.2 million to 17.8 million.

However, it is unknown at this point how much the recent spikes in coronavirus spikes in Florida and other states could affect the numbers.

Some small businesses around the state remain undecided or are unable to institute strong hiring programs, since federal loans that were designed to protect payrolls began to run out after their eight-week terms, according to the state chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business.

Earlier this week, Congress appeared to be close to approving an extension of the Payroll Protection Program through Aug. 8, in an effort to distribute an estimated $120 billion in funding that remains unused.

Since mid-March, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity has paid more than $8.3 billion in state and federal benefits to more than 1.6 million people, according to state figures.

More than $6 billion of it is from federal funds that provide $600 in weekly payments. Those payments are scheduled to end July 31, unless Congress decides to renew the program.