Bureau of Labor Statistics

Work-experience unemployment rate, 2008

January 06, 2010

The "work-experience unemployment rate"—defined as the number of persons unemployed at some time during the year as a proportion of the number of persons who worked or looked for work during the year—was 13.2 percent in 2008, up from 9.5 percent in 2007.

Work-experience unemployment rate (percent with unemployment during the year), by sex, race, and ethnicity, 2007 and 2008
[Chart data]

In 2008, the "work-experience unemployment rate" was 3.7 percentage points higher than in 2007. The 2008 rate was the highest since 1994. The rates for whites, blacks, Hispanics, and Asians rose in 2008.

Overall, men continued to have higher "work-experience unemployment rates" in 2008 than did women, 14.5 versus 11.7 percent, respectively. Among whites, the rate for men (13.9 percent) was higher than that for women (11.1 percent). This also was the case among blacks (20.5 and 15.3 percent, respectively) and Hispanics (18.7 and 15.8 percent, respectively.) The rates for Asian men (9.5 percent) and Asian women (10.5 percent) were little different.

These data are from the Current Population Survey (CPS). For more information, see "Work Experience of the Population — 2008" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL 09-1500. These data are based on information collected in the Annual Social and Economic Supplement (ASEC) to the monthly CPS survey. The ASEC collects information on employment and unemployment experienced during the prior calendar year.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Work-experience unemployment rate, 2008 at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2010/ted_20100106.htm (visited January 20, 2022).


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