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July Jobless Rate, Payrolls Rise As Pennsylvania Seeks Aid

Allyson Ruggieri
90.5 WESA

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rose in July to remain well above the national rate, even as payrolls rebounded for another month from pandemic-driven shutdowns, the state reported Friday.

Meanwhile, Gov. Tom Wolf's office also reported Friday that the state applied to the federal government for a new round of $300 in weekly unemployment benefits under a presidential order tapping into disaster relief aid. Wolf's labor secretary said earlier this week that it would.

Still, Wolf, in a statement, urged Congress to instead extend the $600-a-week unemployment supplement that expired last month.

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate was 13.7% in July, up a half-percentage point from June's adjusted rate, the state Department of Labor and Industry said.

It had initially estimated June's rate at 13%. The state’s rate pandemic-driven unemployment high exceeded 16% in April, the highest rate in more than four decades of record-keeping.

The national rate was 10.2% in July.

Payrolls had another big rebound in July, gaining back another 98,000 of the more than 1 million lost during the pandemic as Pennsylvania battled a resurgence of the virus in July after Wolf eased social distancing restrictions that allowed businesses to reopen.