April 13, 2004
At 8.5 percent, the unemployment rate of persons with less than a high school diploma was higher than that of persons with more education in the fourth quarter of 2003.
Persons with a bachelor’s degree or higher had an unemployment rate of 3.0 percent, a figure that was unchanged over the year after having doubled between 2000 and 2002. The 4.7-percent unemployment rate of those with some college training, but without a degree, also was little changed over the year.
The only group for whom the unemployment rate rose over the year—by 0.3 percentage point, to 5.5 percent—was high school graduates with no college.
These data are from the Current Population Survey. For more information on labor market trends in 2003, see "The U.S. labor market in 2003: signs of improvement by year’s end," by Rachel Krantz, Marisa Di Natale, and Thomas J. Krolik, Monthly Labor Review, March 2004.