U.S. Unemployment Rate Down to 7.6% in March


Both the number of unemployed persons, at 11.7 million, and the unemployment rate, at 7.6 percent, were little changed in March. Employment grew in professional and business services and in health care but declined in retail trade.

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (6.9 percent), adult women (7.0 percent), teenagers (24.2 percent), whites (6.7 percent), blacks (13.3 percent), and Hispanics (9.2 percent) showed little or no change in March. The jobless rate for Asians was 5.0 percent (not seasonally adjusted), little changed from a year earlier.

In March, the number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 4.6 million. These individuals accounted for 39.6 percent of the unemployed. 
 
The civilian labor force declined by 496,000 over the month, and the labor force participation rate decreased by 0.2 percentage point to 63.3 percent. The employment-population ratio, at 58.5 percent, changed little. 
 
The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) fell by 350,000 over the month to 7.6 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. 
 
In March, 2.3 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, essentiallyunchanged from a year earlier. 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. 
 
Among the marginally attached, there were 803,000 discouraged workers in March, little changed from a year earlier. The remaining 1.5 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in March had not searched for work for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.
 

BLS | Nuno Fontes | nuno@tradingeconomics.com
4/5/2013 1:39:42 PM