U.S. Jobless Claims Jump by Most Since March, Approach 1 Million

A contractor frames a house under construction in Lehi, Utah, U.S., on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020. Private residential construction in the U.S. rose 2.7% in November. Photographer: George Frey/Bloomberg
A contractor frames a house under construction in Lehi, Utah, U.S., on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020. Private residential construction in the U.S. rose 2.7% in November. Photographer: George Frey/Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) -- Applications for U.S. state unemployment benefits surged last week by the most since late March, pointing to persistent labor-market pain as coronavirus infections continue to soar.

Initial jobless claims in regular state programs rose by 181,000 to 965,000 in the week ended Jan. 9, Labor Department data showed Thursday. On an unadjusted basis, the figure rose to 1.15 million.