Unemployment for black workers down but still high

The job market appeared to get a little better in July for black Americans, among the hardest hit by high unemployment since the recession ended.

The unemployment rate for black workers declined last month by more than a full percentage point — dropping from 13.7 percent in June to 12.6 percent. That’s the lowest for that group since December 2008. And the rate fell because more people found jobs.

For black men 20 and older, unemployment dropped to 12.5 percent from 13 percent in June. Black adult women saw an even larger decline, to 10.5 percent from 12 percent in June.

Unemployment for black Americans is still among the highest for any single demographic group. And it is nearly double the rate of white workers, which stayed at 6.6 percent last month.

Here are some details from the government’s report for various demographic groups:

Unemployment rates for:
(Numbers in percentages) July 2013 June 2013 July 2012
White: 6.6 6.6 7.4
Black: 12.6 13.7 14.1
Hispanic: 9.4 9.1 10.3
Asian*: 5.7 5.0 6.2
Adult men: 7.0 7.0 7.7
Adult women: 6.5 6.8 7.5
Teenagers: 23.7 24.0 23.9
20-24 years old: 12.6 13.5 13.5
25-54 years old: 6.4 6.4 7.2
55 and over: 5.0 5.3 6.1
Veterans of Iraq/Afghanistan*: 7.7 7.2 8.9
No high school diploma: 11.0 10.7 12.7
High school graduate: 7.6 7.6 8.6
Some college: 6.0 6.4 7.1
College graduates: 3.8 3.9 4.1
Duration of Unemployment
Average length (weeks): 36.6 35.6 38.8
Jobless 6 months or more (pct.): 37.0 36.7 40.6
* not seasonally adjusted
Source: Labor Department
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