posted on 19 December 2015
from the Bureau of Labor Statistics
A total of 159.1 million persons worked at some point during 2014. The proportion of the civilian noninstitutional population age 16 and over who worked at some time during 2014 was 63.6 percent, little different from 63.5 percent in 2013.
The number of persons who experienced some unemployment during 2014 was 17.7 million, down by 3.2 million from 2013. These data are based on information collected in the Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC) to the Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a monthly survey conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau for the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The ASEC collects information on employment and unemployment experienced during the prior calendar year. Additional information about the CPS and the ASEC, including concepts and definitions, is provided in the Technical Note.
Highlights from the 2014 data:
Persons with Employment
Overall, 63.6 percent of the population worked in 2014. The proportion of men who worked at some time during the year was 69.3 percent, and the proportion of women who worked during the year was 58.3 percent. These proportions were little changed from the prior year. (See table 1.)
The proportion of blacks (59.8 percent) who worked at some time during 2014 increased from 2013, while the share of whites (64.2 percent), Asians (63.7 percent), and Hispanics (64.6 percent) showed little change. (See table 2.)
Although the proportion having work experience during 2014 was little changed from a year earlier, those who did work were more likely to work full time. Among those with work experience during 2014, 79.6 percent usually worked full time, up from 79.0 percent in 2013. Men continued to be more likely than women to work full time during the year, 85.7 percent versus 72.7 percent. The proportion of employed women working full time rose over the year, while the proportion of men working full time changed little. (See table 1.)
Of the total who worked during 2014, 78.7 percent were employed year round (working 50 to 52 weeks, either full or part time), up by 0.9 percentage point from 2013. The percentage of men working year round increased by 1.3 percentage points to 81.1 percent in 2014, while the percentage of women employed year round was little changed at 75.9 percent.
Persons with Unemployment
Overall, 162.8 million persons worked or looked for work at some time in 2014. Of those, 17.7 million experienced some unemployment during the year, down by 3.2 million from 2013. (See table 3.) The work-experience unemployment rate (those looking for work during the year as a percent of those who worked or looked for work during the year) continued to decline. At 10.9 percent in 2014, the work-experience unemployment rate was 2.0 percentage points lower than in 2013. The work-experience unemployment rates for whites (10.0 percent), blacks (15.6 percent), and Hispanics (13.5 percent) declined from 2013 to 2014, while the rate for Asians (9.1 percent) changed little.
Overall, men continued to have higher work-experience unemployment rates in 2014 than women, 11.4 percent versus 10.3 percent. Among whites and blacks, the rates for men were higher than the rates for women. Among Asians and Hispanics, the rates for men and women were little different from each other. Among those who experienced unemployment in 2014, the median number of weeks spent looking for work was 16.3. The number of persons who looked for a job but did not work at all in 2014 declined by 1.1 million over the year to 3.7 million. Of the 14.0 million individuals who worked during 2014 and also experienced unemployment, 20.5 percent had two or more spells of joblessness, little different than the share in 2013. (See table 3.)
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