NEW ORLEANS — Barely a week ago, David McGraw was cooking daily for hundreds of fine diners at one of New Orleans’ illustrious restaurants. Today, he’s cooking for himself, at home — laid off along with hundreds of thousands of people across the U.S. in a massive economic upheaval spurred by efforts to slow the spread of the coronavirus. U.S. Department of Labor figures to be released Thursday are expected to shatter the old record for the greatest number of new unemployment claims filed in a single week. There are more suddenly jobless Americans than during the Great Recession. And more than in the aftermath of major natural disasters such as hurricanes, fires and floods. But McGraw, and others like him, don’t need official numbers to understand the new realities of life in one of the nation’s hot spots for the virus that causes the COVID-19 disease. “The whole city, laid off. Everybody,” said McGraw, using an exaggeration that didn’t seem like much of one. “Everybody who worked at a restaurant is laid off.” Restaurants, hotels, airlines, automakers and entertainment venues all have been hit hard as cities, states and entire countries have ordered the closure of non-essential businesses and


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