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This issue introduces a new monthly statistical series on the reasons why unemployed persons began looking for work. The information about the unemployed from the Current Population Survey answers such questions as: How many lost their last obs? How many quit? How many entered the labor force to look for work?

The availability of this type of information, which is presented on a regular monthly basis for the first time, will also permit study of the cyclical and seasonal effects of the different types of unemployment-that due to job loss, quits, or labor force entry. It should also make possible more precise measurement of frictional unemployment and shed further light on why the unemployment rates of various groups-such as teenagers--are typically high.

Earlier special surveys of the reasons why the unemployed began to look for work were conducted in June of 1964, 1965, and 1966 and in December 1964, November 1965, and January 1966. An analysis of the data from these surveys is published in Special Labor Force Report No. 78, Why the Unemployed Looked for Work, which may be obtained from the Bureau of Labor Statistics upon request. The accompanying tables will appear each month in this publication as a part of the regular Household Data section of the "Statistical Tables." A detailed study of the 1967 and 1968 results will be the subject of a Monthly Labor Review article later in the year.

The data in table 1 show that in April 1968 less than half (45 percent) of the unemployed had lost their last job because of layoff or other involuntary job loss such as firing, business failure or relocation, decreased workload, or mechanization. Over 40 percent of the unemployed had entered the labor force to look for work but had not yet found it, and 15 percent had voluntarily left their last job. Job losers as a proportion of the total unemployed

probably will drop during the remainder of the spring and summer as some youths, both those graduating from school and those looking for summer jobs, and other summer workers become unemployed as they enter the labor force. In June, job losers probably will account for only about one-third of the unemployed.

The April data also show that, although the teenage overall overall unemployment rate was four times the rate for adult workers, the big differential was among entrants. The teenage entrant rate was nine times the adult rate; in contrast, the job-loser rate for teenagers was about the same as for adults. Once a teenager has a job, the likelihood that he will lose it is not much greater than for an adult; the typically higher unemployment rate for teenagers, therefore, is largely a function of their frequent movements into and out of the labor force and of hiring practices which favor more experienced workers.

The following terms explain the composition of each of the groups of unemployed persons by reason for beginning to look for work:

I. Job losers.

A. Persons on layoff.

1. Persons on temporary layoff of less than 30 days.

2. Persons on indefinite layoff 30 days or more or with no definite recall date.

B. All other job losers whose employment ended involuntarily and who immediately began looking for work (including persons obliged to retire who immediately began looking for another job).

II. Job leavers.

Persons who quite or otherwise terminated their employment and immediately began looking for work. (including voluntary retirees who immediately began to look).

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Table 1.

Unemployment by Sex, Age, Color, and Reason for Unemployment

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Table 2. Unemployed Persons by Duration, Reason for Unemployment, Sex, and Age

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1/Percent not shown where base is less than 100,000.

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