August 27, 2007
The labor force participation rate for 16- to 24-year-olds—the proportion of that population working or looking for work—was 65.0 percent in July 2007. This was down from 66.7 percent in July 2006 and about 13 percentage points below its peak for that month in 1989 (77.5 percent).
Over the 1989-2007 period, the proportion of youth enrolled in school in July trended up; youth enrolled in school are much less likely than those not in school to be in the labor force.
The July 2007 labor force participation rates for 16- to 24-year-old men (67.9 percent) and women (62.1 percent) were lower than a year earlier. For several decades prior to 1989, young men’s July labor force participation rate showed no clear trend, ranging from 81 to 86 percent. Since July 1989, however, their participation rate has declined by about 15 percentage points.
Young women’s July labor force participation rate peaked in 1989 after a long-term upward trend; their rate has fallen by about 10 percentage points since then.
These data are a product of the Current Population Survey. The data are not seasonally adjusted. Find out more in "Employment and Unemployment Among Youth—Summer 2007," (PDF) (TXT) news release USDL 07-1284.