Record 93,626,000 Americans Not in Labor Force; Participation Rate Hits 38-Year Low

By Ali Meyer | July 2, 2015 | 8:42 AM EDT
(AP Photo/Nati Hanik)

(CNSNews.com) - A record 93,626,000 Americans 16 or older did not participate in the nation’s labor force in June, as the labor force participation rate dropped to 62.6 percent, a 38-year low, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In June, according to BLS, the nation’s civilian noninstitutional population, consisting of all people 16 or older who were not in the military or an institution, hit 250,663,000. Of those, 157,037,000 participated in the labor force by either holding a job or actively seeking one.

The 157,037,000 who participated in the labor force equaled only 62.6 percent of the 250,663,000 civilian noninstitutional population. The labor force participation rate has not been that low since October 1977 when it was 62.4 percent. 

Another 93,626,000 did not participate in the labor force. These Americans did not have a job and were not actively trying to find one.

Of the 157,037,000 who did participate in the labor force, 148,739,000 had a job, while 8,299,000 did not have a job but were actively seeking one—making them the nation’s unemployed.

The 8,299,000 job seekers equaled 5.3 percent of the 157,037,000 actively participating in the labor force during the month. Thus, the unemployment rate was 5.3 percent, down from the 5.5 percent in May.

The number of employed Americans dropped from 148,795,000 in May to 148,739,000 in June, a decline of 56,000. The number of unemployed Americans also dropped over the month from 8,674,000 in May to 8,299,000 in June, a decline of 375,000.