January 09, 2007
In December 2006, the number of unemployed persons was 6.8 million and the unemployment rate was 4.5 percent. Over the year, these measures declined from 7.3 million and 4.9 percent, respectively.
From December 2005 to December 2006, the labor force grew by 2.7 million to 152.8 million and the labor force participation rate rose by 0.4 percentage point to 66.4 percent.
The employment-population ratio in December 2006, at 63.4 percent, was 0.6 percentage point higher than a year earlier.