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Teenage unemployment rate under 10 percent for the third straight month in July 2021

August 11, 2021

The unemployment rate for teenagers (ages 16 to 19) was 9.6 percent in July 2021, following rates of 9.9 percent in June and 9.6 percent in May. The last time the unemployment rate for teenagers was lower than 9.6 percent was in November 1953, when it was 8.6 percent.

Unemployment rates by age, 2019–21, seasonally adjusted
Month Adults, age 20 and older Ages 16–19

Jan 2019

3.6 13.2%

Feb 2019

3.4 13.9

Mar 2019

3.5 12.7

Apr 2019

3.3 13.4

May 2019

3.3 12.3

Jun 2019

3.3 11.4

Jul 2019

3.3 12.0

Aug 2019

3.3 12.4

Sep 2019

3.2 12.5

Oct 2019

3.3 12.6

Nov 2019

3.3 12.5

Dec 2019

3.2 13.0

Jan 2020

3.2 12.6

Feb 2020

3.2 11.5

Mar 2020

4.0 14.1

Apr 2020

14.2 32.1

May 2020

12.7 29.6

Jun 2020

10.7 22.6

Jul 2020

9.9 19.1

Aug 2020

8.1 16.4

Sep 2020

7.5 16.3

Oct 2020

6.6 14.0

Nov 2020

6.4 13.9

Dec 2020

6.3 16.0

Jan 2021

6.0 14.8

Feb 2021

5.9 13.9

Mar 2021

5.8 13.0

Apr 2021

5.8 12.3

May 2021

5.6 9.6

Jun 2021

5.7 9.9

Jul 2021

5.2 9.6

Historically, the unemployment rate for teenagers has typically been much higher than that for adults (age 20 and older). In April 2020, following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the unemployment rate for adults surged to 14.2 percent from 4.0 percent in March 2020. By comparison, the unemployment rate for teenagers increased from 14.1 percent in March 2020 to 32.1 percent in April 2020. Since April 2020, the adult unemployment rate has decreased, but it remains higher than it was before the pandemic. The unemployment rate for teenagers, however, is now lower than it was before the pandemic.

These data are from the Current Population Survey and are seasonally adjusted. See “The Employment Situation — July 2021” to learn more. We also have more charts on employment, unemployment, and the labor force.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Teenage unemployment rate under 10 percent for the third straight month in July 2021 at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2021/teenage-unemployment-rate-under-10-percent-for-the-third-straight-month-in-july-2021.htm (visited December 08, 2021).

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