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Number of unemployed at 6.1 million in January 2024

February 08, 2024

In January 2024, the unemployment rate was 3.7 percent for the third month in a row. The rate has been within the range of 3.4 percent and 3.8 percent since February 2022. The number of unemployed people was little changed at 6.1 million in January 2024. Among the unemployed, 2.2 million, or 34.7 percent, were job losers not on a temporary layoff.

Reasons for unemployment, January 2019–January 2024
Month New entrants Job leavers Reentrants Job losers, not on temporary layoff Job losers, on temporary layoff
Percent Level Percent Level Percent Level Percent Level Percent Level

Jan 2019

9.4 614,000 12.4 807,000 30.2 1,966,000 33.2 2,162,000 14.8 961,000

Feb 2019

10.1 624,000 13.6 836,000 30.6 1,885,000 33.0 2,029,000 12.7 783,000

Mar 2019

10.1 624,000 12.5 775,000 32.1 1,988,000 31.7 1,968,000 13.6 843,000

Apr 2019

9.6 578,000 12.0 722,000 32.4 1,949,000 33.3 2,004,000 12.7 761,000

May 2019

9.8 585,000 13.9 827,000 31.3 1,864,000 30.3 1,807,000 14.6 872,000

Jun 2019

8.6 509,000 15.2 897,000 30.7 1,815,000 32.3 1,911,000 13.2 778,000

Jul 2019

9.6 578,000 13.9 841,000 29.4 1,777,000 32.8 1,981,000 14.4 871,000

Aug 2019

9.7 575,000 13.4 794,000 29.5 1,754,000 33.7 2,003,000 13.7 811,000

Sep 2019

11.3 646,000 14.6 831,000 29.0 1,648,000 31.7 1,802,000 13.4 764,000

Oct 2019

10.3 610,000 14.1 835,000 28.9 1,707,000 32.6 1,926,000 14.0 825,000

Nov 2019

9.7 567,000 13.2 769,000 29.0 1,692,000 34.3 2,002,000 13.7 799,000

Dec 2019

9.9 575,000 14.3 832,000 28.7 1,676,000 33.3 1,945,000 13.8 805,000

Jan 2020

9.5 562,000 14.1 832,000 31.9 1,880,000 33.4 1,968,000 11.0 646,000

Feb 2020

8.9 515,000 13.2 762,000 31.5 1,816,000 33.1 1,907,000 13.3 765,000

Mar 2020

7.6 547,000 9.8 707,000 24.8 1,786,000 29.5 2,125,000 28.2 2,032,000

Apr 2020

1.6 374,000 2.4 548,000 6.4 1,479,000 11.3 2,600,000 78.3 18,073,000

May 2020

2.5 533,000 2.6 548,000 7.9 1,653,000 13.9 2,921,000 73.0 15,309,000

Jun 2020

3.2 572,000 3.2 562,000 13.1 2,301,000 20.7 3,644,000 59.8 10,523,000

Jul 2020

3.3 543,000 3.6 589,000 14.1 2,306,000 22.4 3,681,000 56.6 9,277,000

Aug 2020

4.1 548,000 4.6 617,000 15.2 2,038,000 30.5 4,096,000 45.7 6,148,000

Sep 2020

4.3 537,000 6.5 806,000 16.6 2,076,000 35.7 4,459,000 36.9 4,611,000

Oct 2020

4.7 518,000 7.0 765,000 18.1 1,993,000 40.8 4,493,000 29.4 3,231,000

Nov 2020

5.2 551,000 6.5 689,000 18.5 1,970,000 43.9 4,678,000 26.0 2,778,000

Dec 2020

4.7 510,000 7.0 757,000 20.9 2,252,000 39.0 4,211,000 28.3 3,058,000

Jan 2021

5.5 561,000 6.4 652,000 19.7 2,020,000 41.6 4,265,000 26.8 2,751,000

Feb 2021

5.9 591,000 7.0 703,000 21.5 2,157,000 43.2 4,332,000 22.4 2,241,000

Mar 2021

5.4 522,000 7.9 767,000 23.6 2,300,000 42.6 4,154,000 20.6 2,010,000

Apr 2021

5.5 544,000 8.3 817,000 21.5 2,120,000 43.0 4,240,000 21.7 2,140,000

May 2021

5.6 519,000 8.5 788,000 23.6 2,194,000 42.5 3,938,000 19.8 1,838,000

Jun 2021

5.3 497,000 10.1 947,000 24.4 2,297,000 42.0 3,950,000 18.3 1,717,000

Jul 2021

5.6 490,000 10.6 927,000 26.3 2,301,000 42.6 3,727,000 14.8 1,294,000

Aug 2021

6.2 511,000 10.1 830,000 29.5 2,423,000 39.2 3,217,000 14.9 1,225,000

Sep 2021

6.7 511,000 10.4 789,000 29.3 2,222,000 38.9 2,948,000 14.7 1,116,000

Oct 2021

7.1 514,000 11.7 845,000 29.9 2,163,000 36.8 2,661,000 14.4 1,041,000

Nov 2021

6.5 441,000 12.4 839,000 31.7 2,140,000 36.8 2,481,000 12.5 843,000

Dec 2021

7.8 496,000 11.5 725,000 32.3 2,042,000 36.1 2,283,000 12.3 777,000

Jan 2022

6.6 438,000 14.4 950,000 29.6 1,961,000 34.4 2,274,000 15.0 993,000

Feb 2022

6.8 428,000 15.1 959,000 30.8 1,951,000 33.7 2,136,000 13.5 857,000

Mar 2022

8.0 481,000 13.0 786,000 33.8 2,035,000 33.4 2,015,000 11.8 710,000

Apr 2022

8.2 502,000 13.0 793,000 30.5 1,856,000 33.1 2,011,000 15.1 921,000

May 2022

8.9 531,000 12.9 768,000 32.8 1,960,000 31.7 1,891,000 13.8 822,000

Jun 2022

8.0 472,000 14.2 836,000 34.3 2,020,000 31.0 1,827,000 12.6 743,000

Jul 2022

8.2 477,000 14.5 843,000 31.3 1,821,000 30.8 1,789,000 15.1 879,000

Aug 2022

7.5 447,000 15.2 902,000 30.6 1,817,000 33.0 1,956,000 13.6 808,000

Sep 2022

8.0 454,000 16.0 905,000 31.6 1,795,000 30.4 1,723,000 14.0 796,000

Oct 2022

8.3 492,000 14.5 863,000 31.4 1,863,000 31.3 1,855,000 14.5 862,000

Nov 2022

9.4 556,000 14.0 829,000 30.4 1,799,000 33.0 1,952,000 13.2 778,000

Dec 2022

8.8 502,000 14.4 824,000 31.3 1,786,000 31.7 1,808,000 13.8 788,000

Jan 2023

9.1 526,000 15.3 883,000 31.2 1,799,000 31.2 1,804,000 13.2 763,000

Feb 2023

8.7 521,000 14.8 888,000 30.6 1,844,000 32.5 1,959,000 13.4 807,000

Mar 2023

8.6 506,000 14.2 841,000 28.5 1,683,000 35.6 2,104,000 13.2 781,000

Apr 2023

9.0 519,000 13.6 786,000 30.9 1,778,000 33.3 1,916,000 13.2 760,000

May 2023

8.6 527,000 12.4 764,000 30.1 1,851,000 36.1 2,218,000 12.7 782,000

Jun 2023

9.4 559,000 13.4 796,000 30.0 1,776,000 33.9 2,009,000 13.2 781,000

Jul 2023

9.0 534,000 14.3 854,000 31.3 1,868,000 33.2 1,980,000 12.1 723,000

Aug 2023

9.4 592,000 12.8 804,000 30.8 1,931,000 34.0 2,132,000 13.0 813,000

Sep 2023

9.3 586,000 12.7 797,000 32.3 2,024,000 32.8 2,056,000 13.0 813,000

Oct 2023

9.4 603,000 12.5 801,000 29.2 1,869,000 34.7 2,217,000 14.1 904,000

Nov 2023

9.3 582,000 13.2 821,000 28.4 1,771,000 34.8 2,169,000 14.3 889,000

Dec 2023

9.8 609,000 13.4 833,000 27.9 1,741,000 34.3 2,140,000 14.7 917,000

Jan 2024

8.9 550,000 12.8 794,000 29.5 1,834,000 34.7 2,151,000 14.1 876,000

Data are seasonally adjusted.

The number of job losers who were on a temporary layoff was 876,000 in January 2024, or 14.1 percent of the total unemployed.

At 794,000 in January 2024, people that left their job voluntarily accounted for 12.8 percent of the unemployed compared to 15.3 percent one year prior.

Reentrants to the labor force made up 29.5 percent of the unemployed in January 2024, while new entrants accounted for 8.9 percent.

People are classified as unemployed if they do not have a job, have actively looked for work in the prior 4 weeks, and are currently available for work. There are four unemployment categories: job losers, job leavers, reentrants, and new entrants. Job losers consists of two groups, people on temporary layoff and not on temporary layoff. Job leavers include those who quit or voluntarily ended their jobs and immediately began searching for a new job. Reentrants previously worked but were out of the labor force before they began their job search.  New entrants are looking for their first job and have no previous work experience.

These data are from the Current Population Survey and are seasonally adjusted. For more information, see “The Employment Situation — January 2024.” We also have more charts on employment and unemployment.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Number of unemployed at 6.1 million in January 2024 at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2024/number-of-unemployed-at-6-1-million-in-january-2024.htm (visited February 27, 2024).