Record Number of Women Not Participating in the Labor Force in June

Ali Meyer | July 3, 2014 | 9:55am EDT
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( - The number of women 16 and older not in the labor force climbed to a record high of 55,299,000 in June, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

This means that there were 55,299,000 women 16 and older who not only did not have a job, they did not actively seek one in the last four weeks. That is up 282,000 from the 55,017,000 women who were not in the labor force in May.

In June, according to BLS, the labor force participation rate for women was 56.8 percent, the lowest it has been this year. 

The labor force participation rate, as calculated by the BLS, is the percentage of this population that either has a job or actively sought one in the last four weeks. June’s participation rate of 56.8 percent matches the participation rate in October of 2013, but has not been this low for years -- not since October 1988.

While the number of Americans not working increased and the participation rate decreased, the unemployment rate for women 16 and older decreased over the month from 6.2 percent in May to 5.9 percent in June.

During that month, the number of employed women increased by 64,000 from 68,504,000 in May to 68,586 in June.

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