ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — New applications for unemployment insurance in Minnesota have topped 50,000 for the week as closures of bars, restaurants and other businesses to slow the spread of the coronavirus take a toll on the state’s economy.
The Department of Employment and Economic Development has been taking more than 2,000 applications per hour, compared with the usual 40 or 50.
Gov. Tim Walz warned at a news conference Wednesday that the state faces a long road ahead.
He says it’s “eerie and heartbreaking” to see so many shuttered businesses and schools. Minnesota has 77 confirmed cases of the virus, but health officials call that an undercount.