Thursday, May 14, 2020

April Unemployment Rates by Educational Attainment

The unemployment rate jumped to 14.7 percent in April—more than three times the 4.4 percent rate of March, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is the highest rate of unemployment since the Great Depression. But even this painful figure is an underestimate of the actual level of unemployment in April, as the BLS states in its Employment Situation news release. Here's why: a number of interviewers misclassified those who were unemployed due to the coronavirus pandemic as employed but absent from work. Adding the misclassified workers onto the unemployment roles would have increased the April unemployment rate by nearly 5 percentage points.

Keep this in mind as you take a look at April’s unemployment rates by educational attainment...

Unemployment rate of people aged 25 or older by education, April 2020 (and March 2020)
Not a high school graduate: 21.2% (6.8%)
High school graduate only: 17.3% (4.4%)
Some college/associate degree: 15.0% (3.7%)
Bachelor’s degree or more: 8.4% (2.5%)

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, The Employment Situation—April 2020

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