Unemployment Down to 7.7 Percent, Numbers Still Pretty Awful

Teenage unemployment rate, for example, at 25 percent, nowhere near recent lows


can i volunteer?
Daquella manera / Foter.com

The U.S. unemployment rate is the lowest it's been since December 2008, at 7.7 percent (which, in turn, was the highest it had been to that point since July 1992).

The number may be a recent low, but it's not exactly good, and the crosstabs are worse:

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for whites (6.8 percent)  declined in February while the rates for adult men (7.1 percent), adult women  (7.0 percent), teenagers (25.1 percent), blacks (13.8 percent), and Hispanics  (9.6 percent) showed little or no change. The jobless rate for Asians was 6.1 percent (not seasonally adjusted), little changed from a year earlier.

And it's not just the unemployment rate that's slow to recover from the recession, GDP growth is doing pretty poorly too. Despite this, the president is pushing an increase to the minimum wage, which will only hurt the most vulnerable potential members of the workforce, especially teens, as seen in the chart below:

teenage wasteland
Wall Street Journal

More Reason on unemployment