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Governor Kevin Stitt has announced that Oklahoma will start a new Back to Work Initiative, in addition to reverting back to pre-pandemic unemployment insurance benefits and eligibility requirements starting June 27.  View the Governor's Executive Order for this initiative, and additional resources about this initiative from OESC.

Continued Unemployment Claims Decline for 33rd Consecutive Week

Thursday, February 11, 2021

OESC Pays Out More Than $4 billion Since March 2020

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission (OESC) reports a continued decline in continued and initial unemployment claims, with the continued claims four-week moving average declining for the 33rd consecutive week. 

“The continued decline in claims is certainly encouraging, but we remain focused on providing Oklahomans with the help they need as they continue to navigate unemployment,” said Shelley Zumwalt, OESC Executive Director. “Between March 2020 and January 2021, OESC paid out more than $4 billion in benefits. That’s more than our agency has paid out to Oklahomans in the past 10 years combined. Even as claims decrease, our staff continues to work hard to improve our systems and processes to meet the needs of Oklahomans throughout the pandemic.”

Weekly Unemployment Numbers for Week Ending Feb. 6

  • For the week ending Feb. 6, the advance number of initial claims, unadjusted, totaled 5,253, a decrease of 2,414 from the previous week's revised level of 7,667. 
  • Initial claims’ four-week moving average was 6,580 a decrease of 441 from the previous week's revised average of 7,021.
  • The advance unadjusted number of continued claims totaled 30,467, a decrease of 5,897 from the previous week’s revised level of 36,364.
  • Continued claims’ four-week moving average was 36,291, a decrease of 2,752 from the previous week's revised average of 39,043.

Nationally, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims during the same period was 773,000, a decrease of 19,000 from the previous week's revised level, the U.S. Department of Labor reports. The four-week moving average was 823,000, a decrease of 33,500 from the previous week. For the week ending Jan. 30, DOL reports the advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 3.2%, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the previous week's revised 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.

Updated Graphs for Week Ending Feb. 6

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