Between October 2003 and October 2004, about 500,000 young people dropped out of high school.
The unemployment rate for these high school dropouts was 39.9 percent in October 2004, nearly twice the unemployment rate of 2004 high school graduates who had not enrolled in college (20.0 percent). Among recent high school graduates who were in college, the unemployment rate was 13.3 percent in October.
This information is from a supplement to the October 2004 Current Population Survey. Additional information is available from "College Enrollment and Work Activity of 2004 High School Graduates" (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 05-487.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Unemployment rate 39.9 percent among recent dropouts at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2005/apr/wk1/art03.htm (visited January 28, 2023).