Sunday, September 16, 2012
African-Americans aged 18-34 have the lowest employment rate (54%) since the government started tracking in 1948
African-American youth unemployment is 39.3% (ages 16-19) and is nearly double the 20.9% unemployment rate for whites in the same age demographic. Total African-American unemployment is 14.1%, while overall national unemployment now stands at 8.1%. Two point five million African-Americans are currently looking for work but can't find a job. African-Americans make up a disproportionately large share of the unemployed and long-term unemployed. They account for roughly 19% of the total unemployed population, 23% of those unemployed for more than six months, and 26% of those unemployed for 99 or more weeks. The typical unemployment spell lasts roughly seven months (28.4 weeks) for an African-American worker, compared to less than five months (19.2 weeks) for all workers. African-Americans are more likely to be unemployed than the overall population across all levels of educational attainment. While the unemployment rate for African-Americans without a high school diploma was 21.7% in August 2012, the overall unemployment rate for those without a high school diploma was 15.0%. Likewise, 6.6% of African-Americans with at least a bachelor's degree were unemployed, 50% higher than the overall unemployment rate for those with a 4-year college degree. The median income of African-American households was $32,068, a decline of 3.2% from 2009. The last decade has seen a significant erosion of income for African-American households; from 2000 to 2010, real median household income declined by 14.6%. Since 2007, African-American median household income has declined by 10.1% - the largest decline of all major racial and ethnic groups.