United States Unemployment Rate  1948-2017 | Data | Chart | Calendar

US unemployment rate fell to 4.3 percent in May 2017 from 4.4 percent in the previous month and below market expectations of 4.4 percent. It was the lowest jobless rate since May 2001, as the number of unemployed persons was little changed at 6.9 million and the labor force participation rate fell to 62.7 percent. Unemployment Rate in the United States averaged 5.80 percent from 1948 until 2017, reaching an all time high of 10.80 percent in November of 1982 and a record low of 2.50 percent in May of 1953.

United States Unemployment Rate
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Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus Forecast (i)
2017-04-07 12:30 PM Mar 4.5% 4.7% 4.7% 4.7%
2017-05-05 12:30 PM Apr 4.4% 4.5% 4.6% 4.7%
2017-06-02 12:30 PM May 4.3% 4.4% 4.4% 4.4%
2017-07-07 12:30 PM Jun 4.3% 4.7%
2017-08-04 12:30 PM Jul 4.6%
2017-09-01 12:30 PM Aug 4.7%




US Unemployment Rate Drops To 16-Year Low In May


US unemployment rate fell to 4.3 percent in May 2017 from 4.4 percent in the previous month and below market expectations of 4.4 percent. It was the lowest jobless rate since May 2001, as the number of unemployed persons was little changed at 6.9 million and the labor force participation rate fell to 62.7 percent.

Since January, the unemployment rate has declined by 0.5 percentage point, and the number of unemployed has decreased by 774,000.

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for Whites edged down to 3.7 percent in May. The jobless rates for Blacks (7.5 percent), Asians (3.6 percent), and Hispanics (5.2 percent), as well as those for adult men (3.8 percent), adult women (4.0 percent), and teenagers (14.3 percent), showed little or no change.

Among the unemployed, the number of job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs declined by 211,000 to 3.3 million in May. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was essentially unchanged over the month at 1.7 million and accounted for 24.0 percent of the unemployed. 

The labor force participation rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 62.7 percent in May but has shown no clear trend over the past 12 months. The employment-population ratio edged down to 60.0 percent in May.

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) was little changed at 5.2 million in May. These individuals, who would have preferred full-time employment, were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job.

There were 1.5 million persons marginally attached to the labor force, down by 238,000 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. Among the marginally attached, there were 355,000 discouraged workers in May, down by 183,000 from 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 remaining 1.1 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in May had not searched for work for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.

BLS | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
6/2/2017 12:50:29 PM



United States Labour Last Previous Highest Lowest Unit
Unemployment Rate 4.30 4.40 10.80 2.50 percent [+]
Non Farm Payrolls 138.00 174.00 1115.00 -834.00 Thousand [+]
Nonfarm Payrolls Private 147.00 173.00 1089.00 -816.00 Thousand [+]
Government Payrolls -9.00 1.00 427.00 -260.00 Thousand [+]
Manufacturing Payrolls -1.00 11.00 572.00 -519.00 Thousand [+]
Initial Jobless Claims 241.00 238.00 695.00 162.00 Thousand [+]
Continuing Jobless Claims 1944.00 1936.00 6635.00 988.00 Thousand [+]
ADP Employment Change 253.00 174.00 384.00 -846.00 Thousand [+]
Employed Persons 152923.00 153156.00 153156.00 57635.00 Thousand [+]
Unemployed Persons 6861.00 7056.00 15352.00 1596.00 Thousand [+]
Average Hourly Earnings 0.20 0.20 0.60 -0.20 percent [+]
Average Weekly Hours 34.40 34.40 34.60 33.70 Hours [+]
Labor Force Participation Rate 62.70 62.90 67.30 58.10 percent [+]
Long Term Unemployment Rate 1.01 1.05 2.80 1.01 percent [+]
Youth Unemployment Rate 8.80 9.40 19.50 7.80 percent [+]
Labour Costs 110.04 109.45 110.75 17.12 Index Points [+]
Productivity 107.50 107.50 107.50 27.60 Index Points [+]
Job Vacancies 6371.00 5684.00 6371.00 2132.00 Thousand [+]
Job Offers 6044.00 5785.00 6044.00 2196.00 Thousands [+]
Challenger Job Cuts 51692.00 36602.00 248475.00 15100.00 Persons [+]
Wages 22.00 21.96 22.00 2.50 USD/Hour [+]
Wage Growth 3.67 4.22 13.77 -5.77 percent [+]
Wages in Manufacturing 20.78 20.76 20.78 1.27 USD/Hour [+]
Minimum Wages 7.25 7.25 7.25 0.25 USD/Hour [+]
Employment Cost Index 0.80 0.50 1.60 0.20 percent [+]
Labor Market Conditions Index 2.30 3.70 32.00 -48.40 Index Points [+]
Population 324.30 322.06 324.30 76.09 Million [+]
Retirement Age Women 66.00 66.00 66.00 66.00 [+]
Retirement Age Men 66.00 66.00 66.00 66.00 [+]
Living Wage Family 1496.20 1497.50 2680.00 1433.00 USD/Month [+]
Living Wage Individual 1407.76 1399.20 1407.76 1302.75 USD/Month [+]
Part Time Employment 27366.00 27233.00 28134.00 10086.00 Thousand [+]
Full Time Employment 125620.00 125987.00 125987.00 64640.00 Thousand [+]
Employment Rate 60.00 60.20 64.70 55.00 percent [+]
Wages Low Skilled 1780.00 1810.00 1860.00 1450.00 USD/Month [+]
Wages High Skilled 4130.00 4150.00 4150.00 4000.00 USD/Month [+]


United States Unemployment Rate Notes

In the United States, the unemployment rate measures the number of people actively looking for a job as a percentage of the labour force. This page provides the latest reported value for - United States Unemployment Rate - plus previous releases, historical high and low, short-term forecast and long-term prediction, economic calendar, survey consensus and news. United States Unemployment Rate - actual data, historical chart and calendar of releases - was last updated on June of 2017.

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
4.30 4.40 10.80 2.50 1948 - 2017 percent Monthly



unemployment rate by Country

Last
Spain 18.75 Mar/17
Brazil 13.60 Apr/17
Turkey 11.70 Mar/17
Italy 11.10 Apr/17
France 9.60 Mar/17
Euro Area 9.30 Apr/17
Canada 6.60 May/17
Australia 5.50 May/17
Indonesia 5.33 Mar/17
Russia 5.20 May/17
Netherlands 5.10 May/17
India 4.90 Dec/13
United Kingdom 4.60 Apr/17
United States 4.30 May/17
China 3.97 Mar/17
Germany 3.90 Apr/17
South Korea 3.60 May/17
Mexico 3.50 Apr/17
Switzerland 3.10 May/17
Japan 2.80 Apr/17