Posted on July 3, 2014 Issues: Poverty & Economic Security

(Washington, D.C.) Women gained more than half of the 288,000 jobs in added in June and their unemployment declined to 5.3 percent, according to new analysis by the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) of data released this morning by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

“Women accounted for 55 percent of the 288,000 jobs added last month and their unemployment rate dropped. But these promising signs mask how far the economy still has to go for a full recovery,” said Joan Entmacher, Vice President for Family Economic Security. “Unemployment rates are still above pre-recession levels—and have declined in large part because a smaller percentage of Americans is in the labor force.  Over 3 million jobless Americans have been unemployed for more than six months—and with no emergency unemployment insurance benefits since December, their circumstances are desperate.  Lawmakers need to restore emergency unemployment benefits and make investments that will create jobs and grow the economy.” 

 June showed strong job gains for both women and men:

  • The economy added 288,000 jobs in June. Women gained 158,000 jobs while men added 130,000.
  • Women’s largest job gains were in private education and health services (+39,000), professional and business services (+34,000), the public sector (+26,000) and leisure & hospitality (+24,000).
  • Men’s largest job gains were in professional and business services (+33,000), retail (+32,400), leisure & hospitality (+15,000) and transportation and warehousing (+13,900).

July Jobs Chart

Unemployment rates for adult men and women declined in June:

  • Adult women’s (20 and older) unemployment rate declined to 5.3 percent in June, the lowest since before October 2008 (5.4 percent). But in October 2008 adult women’s labor force participation was at an all-time high (61.1 percent). In June 2014 adult women’s labor force participation rate was 58.3 percent—its lowest point since 1993.
  • Adult men’s (20 and older) unemployment rate declined to 5.7 percent in June, their lowest rate since August 2008 (5.7 percent).  Adult men’s labor force participation rate in June (72.0 percent) was substantially lower than in August 2008 (75.7 percent).
  • Unemployment rates for vulnerable groups of women declined in June, though their rates remained substantially higher than the overall unemployment rate (6.1 percent):
    • African-American adult women’s rate dropped to 9.0 percent from 10.0 percent in May.
    • Hispanic adult women’s unemployment rate declined to 7.2 percent from 7.5 percent in May.
    • Single mothers’ unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent from 8.4 percent in May.

July Unemployment

Long-term unemployment remained historically high in June:

  • Nearly 3.1 million people have been looking for work for six months or more.
  • 32.2 percent of unemployed adult women had been searching for a job for six months or more in June. The share for adult men was 36.5 percent. Prior to this recession, long-term unemployment rates had never been this high since records began to be kept in 1972.
  • Since Congress let federal long-term unemployment benefits expire at the end of 2013, approximately 3.2 million workers have been cut off from benefits.