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The Agency Reports Small Increases in Both Initial and Continued Unemployment Claims

Thursday, July 08, 2021

OESC Continues to Review Back to Work Initiative Applications

OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission (OESC) reports small increases in both initial and continued claims, with the initial claims’ four-week moving average declining and the continued claims’ four-week moving average increasing. In addition, OESC continues to work through applications for the $1,200 Back to Work Initiative. 

“The OESC team is actively reviewing and verifying applications for the Back to Work Initiative,” said Shelley Zumwalt, OESC Executive Director. “About 10% of applications have moved on to the final review process and the remainder have not made it through all stages of the application because they do not meet the eligibility qualifications. We are seeing that a significant number of applicants have made mistakes in the application process that caused them to be denied, whether it was a blurry photo or mismatching information between the paystubs and the application form. If you believe you are eligible and you were denied, we strongly encourage you to review the submission instructions carefully and to reapply for the initiative.”

As a reminder, eligible applicants should take extra steps to ensure paystub photos are not blurry and that all information on the paystubs matches the application form. OESC recommends that applicants do the following:

  • Ensure the photo of paystubs is clear and includes the entirety of the paystubs. 
    • Tip: be sure the area you are photographing is well lit and you have a steady hand.
  • Double check and ensure the information on the paystubs exactly matches the information entered on the application form.
  • If a claimant believes they are eligible and they were denied, OESC encourages them to reapply for the initiative with clear, full photos of the paystubs and matching information at https://oklahoma.gov/oesc/individuals.html.

Weekly Unemployment Numbers for Week Ending June 26

  • For the file week ending June 26, the number of initial claims totaled 9,231, an increase of 70 from the previous week's level of 9,161. 
  • For the same file week, the less volatile initial claims four-week moving average was 9,485, a decrease of 873 from the previous week's average of 10,358.
  • The number of continued claims totaled 34,714, an increase of 322 from the previous week’s level of 34,392.
  • Continued claims’ four-week moving average was 35,142, an increase of 317 from the previous week's average of 34,825.

Nationally, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims for the week ending July 3 was 373,000, an increase of 2,000 from the previous week's revised level, the U.S. Department of Labor reports. The four-week moving average was 394,500, a decrease of 250 from the previous week’s unrevised average. For the week ending June 26, U.S. DOL reports the advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 2.4%, 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.