img: Unemployment rate – Black or African-American – since 1972, Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics
- The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports 6.8% unemployment rate for black workers in December, the lowest in the 45 years the data has been tracked
- Unemployment overall was 4.1%
Unemployment among black workers is at its lowest since at least the early 1970s, when the government began tracking the data.
The black unemployment rate of 6.8% in December was the lowest since the Bureau of Labor Statistics started tracking it in 1972, a year in which the rate ranged from 11.2 percent to 9.4%.
In the 45 years the data has been tracked, the unemployment rate for black or African-American workers aged 16 years and older has never fallen below 7%.
Through last year, the black unemployment rate rose to 8% in March and fell back to 7% in September before falling again in December.
The unemployment rate for white workers was 3.7% in December.
Overall, non-farm payrolls rose 148,000 in December, falling short of the 190,000 expected, according to data released Friday.
The national unemployment rate was 4.1%.
There was an unexpected loss of 20,000 retail jobs during the holiday season.