A decade of jobs growth in the US came to an abrupt halt last month, as employers shed 701,000 jobs amid the coronavirus outbreak.
New data from the US Department of Labor said the unemployment rate rose to 4.4% in the biggest one-month jump since 1975.
The leisure and hospitality industries accounted for more than half the cuts.
The losses - greater than expected - are believed to now be worse since the data was collected early in the month.
Since then, cases of coronavirus have jumped to more than 245,000 and a majority of states have put lockdown measures in place, forcing most businesses to close.