The massive jump in U.S. unemployment insurance claims doesn’t tell you precisely how bad the hit to the job market is going to be. It does show that it is going to be horrible.

The Labor Department on Thursday reported the number of American workers filing new claims for jobless benefits last week rose to 3.28 million from 282,000 a week earlier. Nothing in the 53-year history of the series comes close. In the worst week of 2009, when the job market was reeling, initial claims hit 665,000.