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Posted February 13, 2006 by publisher in Cuban American Business

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Andrea Lehman | HispanicBusiness.com

The New Year brought a slight drop in the unemployment rate for Hispanics, falling to 5.8 percent in January from 6.0 percent in December, according to data released today by the U.S. Department of Labor. The overall U.S. unemployment rate also dropped by 0.2 percentage points, falling to 4.7 percent in January from 4.9 in December.

The Hispanic population in the U.S. that affects the labor market (those over age 16 that are non-institutionalized civilians) decreased by 23,000 in January. However, 259,000 Hispanics previously not considered in the labor force returned to seeking employment. Therefore, the net effect on the Hispanic labor force was an increase of 236,000 people.

The labor market in January provided 278,000 new jobs to Hispanics. This absorbed the entire increase in the labor force as well as decreasing the rolls of the previously unemployed by 42,000 and lowering the unemployment rate.

On an annual basis, employment of Hispanics has increased by 1,136,000 jobs,  bringing the Hispanic unemployment rate down from 6.2 percent in January 2005 to the current 5.8 percent.

Only seasonally unadjusted data is available for comparison of specific groups of Hispanics (men, women, and youths). Seasonally unadjusted rates include the termination of temporary holiday positions, resulting in higher unemployment rates. The overall seasonally unadjusted Hispanic unemployment rate was 6.4 percent in January.

The unemployment rate for Hispanic men (20 years and over) increased to 5.5 percent in January from 5.1 percent in December. This was caused by a loss of 69,000 jobs. Though 17,000 Hispanic men left the labor force in January, this increased the number of unemployed by 52,000.

At 6.1 percent, the unemployment rate in January for Hispanic women 20 years and over increased from 6.0 percent in December. This was caused by an increase in the labor force of 15,000 Hispanic women with only 7,000 of them finding jobs. The remaining women added to the rolls of the unemployed as they unsuccessfully searched for employment.

The unemployment rate for Hispanic youths (age 16 to 19) increased in January to 19.1 percent from 17.3 percent in December. This resulted from a loss of 53,000 jobs, increasing the number of unemployed Hispanic teenagers by 11,000 with the rest leaving the labor force at least temporarily at the end of the holiday season.

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