48.8 percent of recent high school graduates in labor force

April 22, 2013

In October 2012, 48.8 percent of the 3.2 million youth who graduated from high school between January and October 2012 were in the labor force, that is, either working or looking for work.

Labor force participation rate, 2012 high school graduates 16 to 24 years old, by school enrollment, race, and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity, October 2012
CharacteristicPercent of population in labor force

Total, 2012 high school graduates (1)

48.8

White

50.8

Black or African American

48.2

Asian

26.9

Hispanic of Latino ethnicity

42.4

Enrolled in college

38.2

White

40.7

Black or African American

32.0

Asian

20.0

Hispanic of Latino ethnicity

36.4

Not enrolled in college

69.6

White

70.8

Black or African American

70.8

Asian

(2)

Hispanic of Latino ethnicity

56.6

Footnotes:
(1) Data refer to persons who graduated from high school in January through October 2012.
(2) Data not shown where base is less than 75,000.
 

Note: Persons whose ethnicity is identified as Hispanic or Latino may be of any race.
 

The labor force participation rate for recent high school graduates enrolled in college was 38.2 percent. Recent high school graduates enrolled as full-time college students were about half as likely to be in the labor force (33.9 percent) as were their peers enrolled part time (69.2 percent).

Recent high school graduates not enrolled in college in the fall of 2012 were more likely to be in the labor force than their counterparts enrolled in college; 69.6 percent of high school graduates not enrolled in college were working or seeking employment.

Overall, the labor force participation rate for recent Asian high school graduates was lower than rates for recent White, Black, or Hispanic graduates. In part, this reflects the fact that recent Asian graduates are more likely to be enrolled in college than their peers.

This information is from a supplement to the October 2012 Current Population Survey, a monthly survey of about 60,000 households that provides national labor force data. The data presented here refer to persons who graduated from high school in January through October 2012 and were 16 to 24 years old. Persons whose ethnicity is identified as Hispanic or Latino may be of any race. To learn more, see "College Enrollment and Work Activity of 2012 High School Graduates" (HTML) (PDF) news release USDL-13-0670.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Editor's Desk, 48.8 percent of recent high school graduates in labor force on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2013/ted_20130422.htm (visited April 20, 2014).

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