One important element of the recent tax deal is the proposed extension of federal assistance to state unemployment benefit systems. But, the current deal would only continue existing benefits, which expire after a maximum of 99 weeks (depending on state unemployment levels). So, even if the tax deal goes through as is (and everything looks in flux at the moment), the provisions would do nothing for “the 99ers” –those unemployed who have been out of work for 99 weeks or longer.

Calculated Risk has created a nice graph illustrating that a large wave of jobseekers –workers who became unemployed as job losses peaked just under two years ago at the beginning of 2009– will reach their 99 weeks in coming months:

Monthly job changes since start of Great Recession

Source: Calculated Risk.

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