SEOUL, July 13 (Xinhua) -- South Korea's initial jobless claims kept a double-digit growth in June amid the continued increase in job losses, caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, a government report showed Monday.
The number of those who newly applied for job-seeking benefits was 106,000 in June, up 39.5 percent from a year earlier, according to the Ministry of Employment and Labor.
The figure continued to rise in double digits after advancing 32.1 percent in May. Companies encouraged employees to go on an unpaid leave or be laid off amid growing worry about the economic fallout from the pandemic.
The job-seeking benefits are offered by the government to help the unemployed seek jobs, accounting for a majority of unemployment benefits. It is financed by the state employment insurance fund.
The number of job-seeking benefit receivers totaled 711,000 in June, marking a monthly high since the employment insurance scheme was introduced in 1995. In May, the figure was 678,000.
The total payment of job-seeking benefits hit a new high of 1.11 trillion won (924.3 million U.S. dollars) in June, up 62.9 percent from a year earlier.
The record-breaking trend continued for five straight months owing to an increased benefit payment and a higher number of jobless claims. Enditem