Unemployment Rate For Black Women Declines

News & Views | Gerren Keith Gaynor | 10/03/2014 | 10:30 AM EDT

African-American women's participation rate in the labor force remains strong

While the entire country is seeing an increase of participation in the job market, African-American women are especially making gains.


In the month of September, the unemployment rate for Black women over the age of 20 declined to 9.6 percent , down from 11.7 percent in August, according to a jobs report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.


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Adult women of color are faring well compared to African-American men, whose unemployment rate sits at 10.7 percent. It’s also worth noting that despite African-American men having a higher participation rate in the labor force, more women of color have found employment.


Of course, when compared to white women--4.8 percent--the unemployment rate for African-American women isn’t much to brag about. Still, the participation rate for Black women in the labor force was 61.2 percent, while the rate for white women was at 58 percent. The national participation rate in September was 62.7 percent, the lowest its been since 1978, according to the New York Times.


Overall, however, the country’s unemployment rate, 5.9 percent, is the lowest its been in 6 years. American companies added 248,000 jobs in September.


The improved job figures come after President Barack Obama touted his administration's economic achievements in a speech this week. According to polls, the economy is the most important issue for voters leading into the November midterm elections.

(Photo: Kate Kunz/Corbis)

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