511,000 Americans Have Lost Unemployment Benefits So Far This Year | Expirations built into the unemployment insurance system when the program was extended at the start of this year will continue to bite this week, kicking 44,000 unemployed Americans off of benefits. This brings the total number of people who have lost benefits since the start of 2012 to 511,000. The federal government created the Emergency Unemployment Extension in 2008 to supplement unemployment insurance provided by the states. The program was renewed in 2010 and 2011, but the latter renewal included new phase outs to take place over the course of the year, with a complete end to the program this December. The other federal extension of unemployment benefits, the Extended Benefits program, will also wind down this year. If the EUC isn’t extended again, over two-thirds of the unemployed will have no benefits at all by early 2013.