For Release:
September 21, 2023
Timothy Aylor
Senior Economist
Economic Information & Analytics Division
(804) 786-3976

Virginia Unemployment Insurance Weekly Initial Claims at 1,487; Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services Leading Industry for Claims

~ Seasonally unadjusted weekly initial unemployment insurance claims fell from the previous filing week, with continued claims higher over that period ~

RICHMOND—The Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) announced today that the number of initial claims decreased in the latest filing week to 1,487 and remained at typical pre-Pandemic volumes experienced in 2019.

For the filing week ending September 16, the figure for seasonally unadjusted initial claims in Virginia was 1,487, which was a decrease of 631 claimants from the previous week. Continued weeks claimed totaled 13,286, which was 259 claims higher than the previous week and an increase of 39.9% from the 9,494 continued claims from the comparable week last year. An industry was reported for ninety-four percent of claimants. Of those, over half (53 percent) of continued claims were from professional, scientific, and technical services (2,006), administrative and support and waste management (1,792), manufacturing (1,538), and health care and social assistance (1,204). Eligibility for benefits is determined on a weekly basis, and so not all weekly claims filed result in a benefit payment. This is because the initial claims numbers represent claim applications; claims are then reviewed for eligibility and legitimacy.


In the week ending September 16, the advance U.S. figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 201,000, a decrease of 20,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 1,000 from 220,000 to 221,000. The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs[1], unadjusted, totaled 175,661 in the week ending September 16, an increase of 67 (or 0.04 percent) from the previous week. There were 168,701 initial claims in the comparable week in 2022.

Looking at preliminary data, most U.S. states reported increases on a seasonally unadjusted basis. New York’s preliminary weekly change (+1,458) was the largest increase. Georgia’s preliminary weekly change (+1,357) was the second largest increase. South Carolina’s preliminary weekly change (+1,016) was the third largest increase. Texas’s preliminary weekly change (+844) was the fourth largest increase. Virginia had the third largest decrease (-638).



[1] Note: Advance claims are not directly comparable to claims reported in prior weeks. Advance claims are reported by the state liable for paying the unemployment compensation, whereas previous weeks reported claims reflect claimants by state of residence. In addition, claims reported as "workshare equivalent" in the previous week are added to the advance claims as a proxy for the current week's "workshare equivalent" activity.