Ten things you didn’t know about the unemployment rate

The bottom line of the government’s monthly unemployment report — the overall unemployment rate — gets all the headlines, but there are more details beyond the fact the unemployment rate stayed the same last month.

Here are a few:

– The lowest unemployment rate in the U.S. is for Asians — 6.4%. Five percent is considered full employment. The rate for Asians has dropped 1% in a year. But among minority groups, Asians stay unemployed longest.

– The unemployment rate for 16- to 19-year-olds is 26%.

– 2.5 million unemployed people, not included in the unemployment rate, haven’t looked for work in at least the last four weeks.

– The fastest-growing professional sector right now are jobs held by people who help people find jobs.

– The unemployment rate for people who don’t have a high school diploma or equivalent is 15.4%

– The unemployment rate for those with a college degree (and over 25) is 4.4%. That rate has never been higher than 5% since 2000 except for last December and last February.

– The unemployment rate for Iraq-war era veterans lower than for the labor force as a whole. But the unemployment rate for veterans from the first Gulf war era is higher than for the labor force as a whole.

– More than half of the people who are presently unemployed, haven’t had a job in more than 15 weeks.

– 77% of the people employed in education and health services are women, the highest industry sector for employment of women. The lowest is construction (13%).

– The average workweek of those in the leisure/hospitality sector is only 24 hours. Those in the mining industry have an average 44-hour workweek. The average number of overtime hours per week in manufacturing is 3 hours.

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