The official BLS seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April 2021 is 6.1%. That unemployment rate is higher than the 6.0% in March and substantially less than the 14.4% unemployment rate of April 2020.

If one considers the total number of unemployed + those marginally attached to the labor force + those working part-time who want full-time work, the unemployment rate in April was 10.4%, down from 10.7% in March and substantially less than 22.4 % a year earlier.

The Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) is 61.7%, up from 61.5% in March 2021.

The Demographics of Unemployment for April 2021

Unemployment by Gender (20 years and older)

  • Women –4.8% (down from last month)
  • Men –5.3% (up from last month)

Unemployment by Race

  • White – 5.3% (down from last month)
  • Black – 9.7% (up from last month)
  • Hispanic – 7.9% (same as last month)
  • Asian –5.7% (down from last month)

Unemployment by Education (25 years & over)

  • Less than high school –9.3% (up from last month)
  • High School –6.9% (up from last month)
  • Some college –5.8% (up from last month)
  • Bachelor’s Degree or higher – 3.5% (down from last month)

In March, 30 states had unemployment rates below the national average of 6.0%. 21 states, including the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, had unemployment rates that were above the national average. The unemployment rate in one state is even with the national average.

The state with the highest unemployment rate in March was Hawaii at 9.0%. [BLS 5/21]

22% of parents generally and 36% of Black mothers and 30% of Hispanic mothers, were “either not working or working less because of disruptions to childcare or in-person schooling. 20% of people aged 25-54 without a four-year college degree were laid off in 2020 versus 12% for those with at least a college degree.

About 14% of whites in their prime working years were laid off at some point in 2020. This is also true of 20% or more for Blacks and Hispanics in that group. [Jerome Powell, Chair of the Federal Reserve. [Axios Morning 5/4/21]

Research shows that nonunion members would get a significant wage boost if union membership reverted to its 1979 level – and this is especially the case for those with a college degree. 94% of unionized works have health insurance from work compared to 67% of nonunion workers. [Groundwork Collaborative 4/22/21]

56% of Americans say the long-term decline in share of workers represented by unions is bad for the US. 40% say that decline is good.

In 1983, 20% of American workers were union members. In 2020, that number had dropped to 10.8%.

37%, including 22% of Dem/Lean Dem and 55% of Rep/Lean Rep, say the large reduction in the percentage of workers represented in unions has been good for working people. [PEW 4/15/21]