October 26, 2005
The September 2005 total of initial claims for unemployment compensation due to mass layoff events was the highest total for any month since September 2001—the data reflected the impact of Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana and Mississippi and, to a lesser extent, that of Hurricane Rita in Texas.
Among the states, Louisiana recorded the highest number of initial claims filed due to mass layoff events in September 2005, 87,449. There were 19,098 initial claims in Mississippi, and 5,058 in Texas.
The weekly initial claims data by state show the impact of the two hurricanes. As shown in the chart, mass layoff initial claims in Louisiana were highest in the first week of the September 2005 reference period, the first week following Hurricane Katrina's landfall. In Mississippi, they peaked in the second week.
The significant rise in initial claims in Texas occurred in the last week of the reporting period, which followed Hurricane Rita's landfall. Louisiana also reported an increase in that week.
These data are from the Mass Layoff Statistics program. Mass layoffs data for September 2005 are preliminary and subject to revision. To learn more about mass layoffs and associated claims for unemployment compensation see, Mass Layoffs in September 2005 (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 05-1980. Data for September are the first from the Mass Layoff Statistics program to reflect the initial job losses associated with Hurricane Katrina, which struck the Gulf Coast on August 29, and Hurricane Rita, which made landfall on September 24.