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Coronavirus In Ohio: State Stops Releasing Unemployment Claims Daily

Now-Lt. Gov. Jon Husted speaking at the Columbus Chamber of Commerce Government Day in Cincinnati, Ohio on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018.
John Minchillo
Associated Press
Ohio Lt. Gov. Jon Husted says he does not agree with the federal request to withhold the daily release of jobless filings in Ohio, but will comply of the order.

The numbers of Ohioans filing for unemployment benefits is rising daily – so quickly, in fact, that the state’s unemployment website was having trouble handling them. Now Ohio is clarifying why it will no longer release the data daily about how many people are filing jobless claims.

For the first few days of shutdowns related to coronavirus, the state was releasing the number of unemployment claims daily: They soared from around 562 on March 8 to more than 28,000 on March 19.

The U.S. Department of Labor then sent a letter telling states to hold unemployment claims filings until national data is released on Thursday mornings.

"The data from these reports is monitored closely by policy makers and financial markets to determine appropriate actions in light of fast changing economic conditions," the letter reads.

Lt. Gov. Jon Husted says he’s frustrated the state's numbers will now be released weekly.

“I believe that we should be allowed to release it on a daily basis, but that’s what they asked for, and we have to collaborate, we have to work together,” Husted says

During the first five days of last week from March 15-19, a total of 139,468 Ohioans filed for unemployment. That compares to 4,815 in same first five days the previous week.