June 10, 2003
In May 2003, the civilian labor force and labor force participation rate were unchanged since April, at 146.5 million and 66.4 percent, respectively. Total employment, at 137.5 million, was not significantly different from April's level.
The number of unemployed persons was 9.0 million in May; the unemployment rate was 6.1 percent. Among these, the number of unemployed job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs rose by 309,000 to 5.1 million.
The number of persons unemployed less than 5 weeks edged up to 3.1 million. There were 1.9 million persons unemployed for 27 weeks or longer in May, about the same as in April. This measure has increased by 347,000 over the past 12 months.