U.S. military veterans and nonveterans in the labor force, 2013

June 06, 2014

June 6 is the 70th anniversary of the Allied Invasion of Normandy during World War II. To mark the occasion, we take a brief look at the 21.4 million men and women in 2013 who were U.S. military veterans. These veterans accounted for 9 percent of the civilian noninstitutional population age 18 and older.

Percentage of the civilian population age 18 and older who are military veterans, by age, 2013 annual averages

 

Percentage of the civilian population age 18 and older who are military veterans, by age, 2013 annual averages
AgePercent

Total

9.0

18 to 24 years

0.7

25 to 34 years

4.2

35 to 44 years

5.9

45 to 54 years

7.9

55 to 64 years

11.2

65 years and older

21.5

 

Veterans are more likely to be men and older than nonveterans. In part, this reflects the characteristics of veterans who served during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam era. Veterans who served during these wartime periods accounted for nearly half of the total veteran population in 2013.

Among the population age 65 and older, 21 percent were military veterans in 2013. Eleven percent of 55- to 64‑year‑olds were veterans, as were 8 percent of 45- to 54‑year‑olds. People in younger age groups were less likely to be veterans.

Overall, nonveterans were more likely than veterans to participate in the labor force. That is largely because veterans are more concentrated in older age groups that tend to have lower labor force participation rates. Veterans were somewhat more likely than nonveterans to participate in the labor force in 2013 among 18- to 24‑year‑olds and 35- to 44‑year‑olds. In other age groups, there was little difference between the labor force participation rates of veterans and nonveterans.

 

Labor force participation rates of veterans and nonveterans age 18 and older, by age, 2013 annual averages

 

Labor force participation rates of veterans and nonveterans age 18 and older, by age, 2013 annual averages
AgeVeteransNonveterans

Total

51.366.1

18 to 24 years

72.764.7

25 to 34 years

81.281.2

35 to 44 years

88.981.8

45 to 54 years

82.179.5

55 to 64 years

60.764.8

65 years and older

20.018.3

 

These data are from the Current Population Survey. For more information, see "Employment Situation of Veterans — 2013" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL‑14‑0434. Veterans are defined as men and women who have previously served on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces and who were civilians at the time these data were collected.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, U.S. military veterans and nonveterans in the labor force, 2013 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2014/ted_20140606.htm (visited October 31, 2014).

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