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Friday, November 06, 2009

Unemployment Reaches 10.2, Highest Since 1983

The Wall Street Journal reports that unemployment has topped 10 percent for the first time in 26 years, reaching 10.2 percent.

From the U.S. Department of Labor news release:

The unemployment rate rose from 9.8 to 10.2 percent in October, and nonfarm payroll employment continued to decline (-190,000), the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The largest job losses over the month were in construction, manufacturing, and retail trade.

The breakdown by household:

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (10.7 percent) and whites (9.5 percent) rose in October. The jobless rates for adult
women (8.1 percent), teenagers (27.6 percent), blacks (15.7 percent), and Hispanics (13.1 percent) were little changed over the month. The unemployment rate for Asians was 7.5 percent, not seasonally adjusted. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks and over) was little changed over the month at 5.6 million. In October, 35.6 percent of unemployed persons were jobless for 27 weeks or more. (See table A-9.)

The civilian labor force participation rate was little changed over the month at 65.1 percent. The employment-population ratio continued to decline in October, falling to 58.5 percent. (See table A-1.)

The number of persons working part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) was little changed in October at 9.3 million. These individuals were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. (See table A-5.)

About 2.4 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force in October, reflecting an increase of 736,000 from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. (See table A-13.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 808,000 discouraged workers in October,
up from 484,000 a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them. The other 1.6 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in October had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.

Read the rest of the news release.

The breakdown by state (right side of page) shows that many states have an unemployment percentage above 10 percent, those states with their percentages are listed below.

Alabama at 10.7 percent
California at 12.2 percent
D.C. at 11.4 percent
Florida at 11 percent
Georgia at 10.1 percent
Illinois at 10.5 percent
Kentucky at 10.9 percent
Michigan at 15.3 percent
Nevada at 13.3 percent
North Carolina at 10.8 percent
Ohio at 10.1 percent
Oregon at 11.5 percent
Puerto Rico at 16.2 percent
Rhode Island at 13.0 percent
South Carolina at 11.6 percent
Tennessee at 10.5 percent