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Massive layoffs hit Arizona as virus staggers economy

Posted at 1:56 PM, Mar 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-27 16:56:58-04

GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Arizona is ramping up its unemployment insurance operations as the coronavirus staggers industries that are key to the state's economy.

The state agency overseeing the program saw a 760% increase in new filings last week to nearly 30,000.

It is expected to see an exponential increase for the current week as restaurants, bars, resorts and other industries that cater to tourists and the public cut huge numbers of staff.

Arizona officials said Friday there are now 665 confirmed coronavirus cases and 13 deaths in the state. There were 64 confirmed cases and just one death a week earlier.