Friday, October 05, 2007

Rising Unemployment, But Education Pays Off

Employment rose in September, and the unemployment rate increased slightly to 4.7%, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today.

AP: "The bump up in the unemployment rate from 4.6%in August came as hundreds of thousands of people streamed back into the labor market. That new rate of 4.7% the highest since the summer of 2006, is still considered low by historical standards."

The BLS also reports the unemployment by educational attainment in Table A-4 of its report, shown above in the chart (click to enlarge). Notice that the unemployment rate for those with some college has actually decreased from August to September from 3.7% to 3.4%, and has stayed the same for workers with a college degree (2.0%). For high school graduates, the jobless rate has increased by .40% from 4.3% in August to 4.6% in September, and for workers without a high school diploma the rate increased by .70%, from 6.7% to 7.4%.

Therefore, the increase in the September unemployment rate is entirely due to an increase in unemployment for workers with a high school degree or less. For workers with at least some college, unemployment rates are falling (some college, no degree) or stable (college graduates).


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