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THE LABOR FORCE
JOSEPH M. FINERTY, EDITOR
The Summary Employment and Unemployment Developments (page 4) contains a short discussion on the employment status of persons living in the poverty and other urban neighborhoods of our 100 largest metropolitan areas.
A new monthly series on reasons for unemployment is introduced on page 9.
JOHN E. BREGGER, ASSOCIATE EDITOR
State and Area:
Annual averages, 1965-67, covering employment, hours and earnings, and labor turnover appear in a special section on page 107.
A new area, Greensboro-Winston-Salem-High Point, North Carolina, is introduced in Tables B-7 and C-9.
MAY 1968 VOL. 14 NO. 11
4 Summary Employment and Unemployment Developments, April 1968
Why the Unemployed Began Looking for Work
State and Area Annual Averages 1965-67
SECTION A-LABOR FORCE, EMPLOYMENT, AND
18 A- 1: Employment status of the noninstitutional population, 1929 to date A- 2: Employment status of the noninstitutional population 16 years and over by sex, 1947 to date
A- 3: Employment status of the noninstitutional population by age, sex, and color
Labor force by age, sex, and color
Employment status of persons 16-21 years of age in the noninsti
tutional population by color and sex
A- 6: Employment status of the noninstitutional population 16 years and over by color, age, and sex
A- 7: Full- and part-time status of the civilian labor force by age and sex
Characteristics of the Unemployed
A- 8: Unemployed persons by age and sex
A- 9: Unemployed persons by marital status, age, sex, and color
28 A-13: Unemployed persons by duration, sex, age, color, and marital status A-14: Unemployed persons by duration, occupation, and industry of last job
Characteristics of the Employed
Data on 14 and 15 Year-olds
A-25: Employment status of 14-15 year-olds by sex and color 39 A-26: Employed 14-15 year-olds by sex, major occupation group, and class of worker
A-15: Employed persons by age and sex
A-16: Employed persons by occupation group, age, and sex
A-17: Employed persons by major occupation group, color, and sex
A-19: Employed persons with a job but not at work by reason, pay status,
Persons at work by type of industry and hours of work
A-21: Persons at work 1-34 hours by usual status and reason working
A-22: Nonagricultural workers by full- or part-time status
A-23: Persons at work in nonagricultural industries by full- or part-time
Seasonally Adjusted Data
A-27: Employment status of the noninstitutional population by age and sex,
A-28: Employment status by color, sex, and age, seasonally adjusted
43 A-30: Unemployed persons by duration of unemployment, seasonally
A-31: Rates of unemployment by age and sex, seasonally adjusted
SECTION B-EMPLOYMENT ESTABLISHMENT DATA
State and Area
62 B-7: Employees on nonagricultural payrolls for States and selected areas, by industry division SECTION C-HOURS AND EARNINGS
B-1: Employees on nonagricultural payrolls, by industry division, 1919 to date
B-2: Employees on nonagricultural payrolls, by industry
B-4: Indexes of employment on nonagricultural payrolls, by industry
B-6: Production workers on manufacturing payrolls, by industry,
State and Area
C-9: Gross hours and earnings of production workers on manufacturing payrolls, by State and selected areas SECTION D-LABOR TURNOVER - ESTABLISHMENT DATA
C-1: Gross hours and earnings of production or nonsupervisory workers on private nonagricultural payrolls, 1947 to date
C-2: Gross hours and earnings of production workers, by industry
C-3: Employment, hours, and indexes of earnings in the Executive Branch of the Federal Government
C-4: Average hourly earnings excluding overtime of production workers on manufacturing payrolls, by industry
C-5: Gross and spendable average weekly earnings of production or nonsupervisory workers on private nonagricultural payrolls, in
current and 1957-59 dollars
Indexes of aggregate weekly man-hours and payrolls in industrial and
Average weekly hours of production or nonsupervisory workers
State and Area
D-5: Labor turnover rates in manufacturing for selected States and areas SECTION E-UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE DATA
D-1: Labor turnover rates in manufacturing, 1958 to date
D-2: Labor turnover rates, by industry
Labor turnover rates in manufacturing, by sex and major industry' D-4: Labor turnover rates in manufacturing, 1958 to date, seasonally
E-1: Insured unemployment under State programs
E-2: Insured unemployment in 150 major labor areas
DEVELOPMENTS, APRIL 1968
Unemployment fell for the second month and nonfarm payroll employment edged up in April. At 3.5 percent (seasonally adjusted) the April unemployment rate compares with 3.6 percent in March and equals the postKorean low reached in January.
Payroll employment rose 110,000 (seasonally adjusted) in April to 67.9 million. Much of the increase in employment was due to the termination of strikes in the copper mining and glass container industries.
In the first periodic release of what is to become a regular part of its program, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the unemployment rate in the poorest one-fifth of the neighborhoods in the Nation's 100 largest cities was 7.0 percent in the first quarter of 1968, double the 3.4 percent rate of the remaining neighborhoods. Negro unemployment rates were higher than white rates both in these poor neighborhoods (8.7 as compared with 5.7 percent) and in the remaining neighborhoods (6.5 as compared with 3.1 percent).
The number of unemployed persons fell 150,000 more than seasonally between March and April to 2.5 million. Over half the April improvement occurred among teenagers. Unemployment rates edged down to 2.1 percent for adult men and 11.9 percent for teenagers. The jobless rate for adult women remained unchanged at 3.7 percent. For adult men, the jobless rate and level were at their lowest points since the Korean War.
Jobless rates for both white and nonwhite workers have edged down in the past two months. However, the nonwhite rate in April (6.7 percent) remained more than double the white rate.
State insured unemployment declined more than seasonally in April, the rate falling slightly to 2.2 percent.
Over the year, total unemployment was down 175,000, with declines of 100,000 for adult men and 70,000 for adult females. Teenage unemployment was not significantly changed from a year earlier. The bulk of the over-the-year decline for both adult women and men was among those last employed as blue-collar workers.
One of the major factors in the lower unemployment levels this April as compared with last April is an improved employment picture in durable-goods manufacturing. In April 1967, the manufacturing inventory-toshipments ratio was excessive, and the jobless rate in durable-goods manufacturing was 3.4 percent. In April 1968, with a more favorable inventory-shipments ratio, the rate for durable goods workers had dropped to 2.7 percent. This reduction, along with an improved job picture in construction, contributed heavily to a lower unemploymnt rate for blue-collar workers (down 0.7 percentage point to 3.9 percent) and the over-the-year decline in the level of unemployment.
About two-thirds of the seasonally adjusted 110,000 increase in payroll employment in April occurred in manufacturing. Nearly all of the manufacturing increase (57,000) was in durable goods, accounted for by post-strike production pickups in the stone, clay, and glass and primary metals industries. The employment advance in nondurable goods (16,000) was concentrated in the apparel industry.
Small seasonally adjusted job increases were registered in finance, medical-health services, and State and local government.
than usual in retail trade.
Over the year, payroll employment was up 2.3 million to 67.6 million. Government, trade, and services accounted for 1.7 million (nearly three-fourths) of the employment increase. Compared to a year earlier, manufacturing employment was up 250,000.
Hours and Earnings
Average weekly hours declined in most. major industry groups in April. The decline. was partially attributable to religious observances and to civil disturbances in a number of cities during the reference week. The average workweek for factory production workers fell 0.3 of an hour (seasonally adjusted) to 40.4 hours in April. Overtime hours in manufacturing dipped 0.4 hour to 3.0 hours.
Average hourly earnings for rank and file workers on private payrolls rose 2 cents over the month to $2.79. As a result, their average weekly earnings advanced to $104.63, 20 cents over the March level.
Weekly earnings for factory production workers were up $6.14 (5.5 percent) over the year. Their hourly earnings, at $2.96, were up 16 cents (5.7 percent) over the year.
Total Employment and Labor Force
Both the labor force and total employment declined over the month on a seasonally adjusted basis. The nonagricultural employment decline of 130,000 was almost entirely accounted for by women.
Over the year, the expansion of job opportunities (1.7 million) was sufficiently large to absorb increases in the labor force (1.5 million) and to bring unemployment down to 2.5 million.
The 6.6 million workers (16 years of age and over) living in big-city poverty neighborhoods had a jobless rate of 7.0 percent in the first quarter of 1968. Their rate was twice that of persons living in the other urban neighborhoods (3.4 percent) and was also much higher than for the Nation as a whole (4.0 percent) during the quarter. Significantly, the widest gap existed between the jobless rates for adult males--usually
1 These sample survey data for poverty and other urban neighborhoods reflect the employment situation in the Nation's 100 largest standard metropolitan statistical areas taken as a whole. The poverty area classification system was developed by the Bureau of the Census for the Office of Economic Opportunity. Poverty areas were identified by ranking census tracts in metropolitan areas with a population of 250,000 or more on the basis of 1960 data on income, education, skills, housing, and proportion of broken families. The tracts that ranked the lowest on these indexes of relative wellbeing were initially designated as poverty tracts and grouped in poverty areas. The boundaries of poverty areas were adjusted to allow for major urban renewal activities since April 1960 and to achieve contiguity. Finally, areas including 4,660 tracts in 100 cities were designated as poverty areas. These areas probably include some middleand upper-income families and of course exclude some poor families who live elsewhere. Thus, these data should be viewed as minimal estimates of the adverse conditions in poor neighborhoods. For a detailed description of the techniques employed, see Characteristics of Families Residing in Poverty Areas: March 1966 (U.S. Bureau of the Census, Series P-23, No. 19). Definitions and additional data will also be presented in a forthcoming Monthly Labor Review article.