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OESC Continues to Focus on Re-employment Efforts

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Initial Claims Fall, Continued Claims Increase

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission (OESC) this week reports mixed unemployment claim numbers with a decrease in initial claims, an increase in continued unemployment claims, and an increase in the continued claims four-week moving average. With career fairs scheduled throughout May, OESC is focused on helping Oklahomans find employment opportunities. 

“Last week, we saw a decrease in initial claims, with an increase in continued employment claims, which is likely due to an increase in initial claims from the previous week rolling into the continued claims category,” said Shelley Zumwalt, OESC Executive Director. “The agency remains focused on re-employment efforts to help Oklahomans re-enter the workforce. The career fairs we are hosting in May will provide an opportunity for employers and claimants to connect. I hear from employers regularly that they have jobs available and we are placing priority on connecting employers with those who need jobs.”

Unemployment Benefit Eligibility Requirements

In accordance with the U.S. Department of Labor (U.S. DOL) regulations and guidelines, claimants are required to search for work weekly. If a claimant rejects a suitable offer, they are no longer eligible for unemployment benefits. To ensure OESC is following all U.S. DOL requirements, the agency requests employers report claimants who turn down job offers. Employers should provide information on those who have rejected job offers to OESC by emailing

Career Fairs

Claimants can fulfill their work search requirements at the upcoming career fairs that OESC will host in May at these locations: 

  • Tulsa Expo Square, May 6-7
  • McAlester Expo Center, May 10
  • Enid Stride Bank Center, May 12
  • Lawton Hilton Garden Inn, May 14
  • Oklahoma City Convention Center, May 17-18
  • Virtual, May 5-28

Employers can register to participate in the career fairs at, and those looking for jobs can register at

Weekly Unemployment Numbers for Week Ending April 17

  • For the week ending April 17, the advance number of initial claims, unadjusted, totaled 16,034, a decrease from the previous week's revised level of 17,997. 
  • Initial claims’ four-week moving average was 14,241, an increase of 2,285 from the previous week's revised average of 11,956.
  • The advance unadjusted number of continued claims totaled 31,976, an increase of 6,383 from the previous week’s revised level of 25,593.
  • Continued claims’ four-week moving average was 26,419, an increase of 1,780 from the previous week's revised average of 24,639.

Nationally, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims during the same period was 547,000, a decrease of 39,000 from the previous week's revised level, the U.S. Department of Labor reports. The four-week moving average was 651,000, a decrease of 27,750 from the previous week. For the week ending April 10, U.S. DOL reports the advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.6%, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the previous week's unrevised rate.

The national weekly seasonally adjusted initial claims report is one of 10 components in the Composite Index of Leading Economic Indicators. To smooth out the volatility in the weekly initial claims data, a four-week moving average is used to assess trends.

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