Monday, December 6, 2010

The November Unemployment Numbers

Unemployment continues to be high; The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday that the unemployment rate climbed slightly in November to 9.8 percent (up from 9.6 percent in October). This means that there are approximately 15.1 million unemployed people in the United States. Additionally, unemployment is having a significant effect on members of minority groups with 16 percent of African Americans and 13.2 percent of Hispanic Americans reporting that they are unemployed.

While the private sector continues to report increases in job creation, the recovery is slow, and there are still more than 7 million fewer jobs in the U.S. today than when the recession began in 2007. Economic Snapshot for November 2010, by Christian Weller at the Center for American Progress, addresses the economic improvements being made, and why they haven’t yet positively impacted the families across the country experiencing unemployment, foreclosures and credit default at record rates.

Chad Stone at The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities issued a statement regarding the November Unemployment numbers. Stone states that long-term unemployment remains a very serious concern. Over two-fifths (41.9 percent) of the 15.1 million people who are unemployed (6.3 million people) have been looking for work for 27 weeks or longer (amounting to 4.1 percent of the labor force). Additionally, Stone states that it remains very hard to find a job. The Labor Department’s most comprehensive alternative unemployment rate measure — which includes people who want to work but are discouraged from looking and people working part time because they can’t find full-time jobs — remained at 17.0 percent in November, not much below its all-time high of 17.4 percent.

The Urban Institute is hosting a series of events addressing the U.S. job market. The events, solution-focused policy forums, will address strategies for job creation, labor market roadblocks for young workers and retirement barriers for older workers, and revamping the safety net so that it works during high, persistent unemployment. All event can be attended in-person or via webcast.

  • December 10, 2010: Jumpstarting the Job Market
  • January, 25, 2011: Young and Older Workers (Not) Entering and Exiting the Labor Market
  • February 23, 2011: How Should the Safety Net Be Retooled to Work in Times of High Unemployment?

For more strategies to promote Family Economic Success.