Veterans Unemployment Rate Ticks Up to 3.1 Percent in November

Unemployment rate. Getty Images
Unemployment rate. Getty Images

The veterans jobless rate ticked up slightly to 3.1 percent in November but remained in the range of historic lows for veterans of all eras, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

The BLS report for November, released Friday, showed that the unemployment rate for veterans of all eras increased from 2.9 percent in October to 3.1 percent in November.

October's 2.9 percent marked only the second time since 2000 that the jobless rate for all veterans fell below 3 percent. The lowest recorded rate for all veterans was 2.7 percent in October 2017, according to BLS.

For post-9/11 veterans, classified as "Gulf War-era II" veterans by BLS, the unemployment rate in November was 3.4 percent, up from 3.1 percent in October, still well below the double-digit unemployment figures for post-9/11 veterans recorded in 2010, when the nation was pulling out of the 2008 recession.

For Gulf War-era I veterans of Desert Shield and Desert Storm, the unemployment rate in November was 2.6 percent, down from 2.7 percent in October, BLS said.

For World War II, Korea and Vietnam veterans, the unemployment rate in November was 2.2 percent, down from 3.0 percent in October.

For the nation as a whole, the unemployment rate remained at 3.7 percent for the third consecutive month.

"The number of unemployed persons was little changed at 6.0 million. Over the year, the unemployment rate and the number of unemployed persons declined by 0.4 percent and 641,000, respectively," BLS wrote in the report.

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (3.3 percent), adult women (3.4 percent), teenagers (12.0 percent), Whites (3.4 percent), Blacks (5.9 percent), Asians (2.7 percent), and Hispanics (4.5 percent) showed little or no change in November, according to BLS.

In a statement accompanying the report, William J. Wiatrowski, acting BLS commissioner, said health care employment grew by 32,000 jobs over the month and has expanded by 328,000 over the year.

He said manufacturing employment rose by 27,000 jobs in November, with job gains of 6,000 in chemicals and 3,000 in primary metals. Over the past 12 months, manufacturing has added 288,000 jobs, Wiatrowski added.

-- Richard Sisk can be reached at

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