Food Stamp Hit Record 40.8m In May

The number of Americans who are receiving food stamps rose to a record 40.8 million in May as the jobless rate hovered near a 27-year high, the government reported yesterday.

Recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program subsidies for food purchases jumped 19 percent from a year earlier and increased 0.9 percent from April, the US Department of Agriculture said in a statement on its website.

Participation has set records for 18 straight months.

Unemployment in July may have reached 9.6 percent, according to a Bloomberg News survey of analysts in advance of the Aug. 6 release of last month