The Employment Situation of Veterans – January 2024 - D'Aniello Institute for Veterans and Military Families

The Employment Situation of Veterans – January 2024

Overview

On February 2nd, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that employment rose by 353,000 in January, and the unemployment rate remained at 3.7 percent. Job gains occurred in professional and business services, health care, retail trade, and social assistance. Employment declined in the mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction industry.[1] For veterans, unemployment increased from 3.0 percent in December 2023 to 3.3 percent in January 2024. Post-9/11 veteran unemployment also increased, moving from 3.3 percent to 3.7 percent in January. The overall unemployment trend shows variations by different veteran demographic factors, with some groups being more affected than others.

Regarding age, the unemployment rate for veterans aged 18-24 increased in January, jumping from 7.7 percent to 11.0 percent. The unemployment rate for veterans aged 25-34 increased from 4.5 percent to 6.7 percent. During this period, veterans aged 18-24 had higher unemployment rates (7.6 percent) compared to their nonveteran peers of the same age group, and veterans aged 25-34 also had higher unemployment rates (4.3 percent) compared to their nonveteran counterparts in the same age group. The unemployment rate for veterans aged 65 and older increased in January, going from 2.8 percent to 3.3 percent. Veterans aged 65 and older were unemployed at a lower rate as their nonveteran peers of the same age group in January (4.0 percent). The unemployment rate for female veterans increased in January, rising from 3.3 percent to 4.8 percent. In comparison, female nonveterans had an unemployment rate of 3.4 percent. The unemployment rate for male veterans increased in January, to 3.1 percent. By comparison, male nonveterans had an unemployment rate of 4.6 percent.

The unemployment rate for Black or African American veterans decreased from 4.9 percent to 3.4 percent in January. This rate was lower than the unemployment rate for their nonveteran counterparts (5.6 percent). The unemployment rate for Hispanic, Latino/a, or Spanish Origin veterans increased from 3.4 percent to 5.4 percent in January, which was lower than the unemployment rate of their nonveteran counterparts (5.7 percent). However, readers should be cautioned that data on specific veteran subgroups can vary widely from month to month.

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Demographics & Trends

The following tables summarize the employment situation of veterans in America based on BLS data released on February 2, 2024. These are unpublished data from the Current Population Survey, not seasonally adjusted, and represent the period ending January 2024.

UNEMPLOYMENT RATES FOR: December 2023 January 2024 CHANGE  (+/-) Annual Averages 2023
All Americans (18 and over) 3.4 4.0 +0.6 3.5
All Veterans 3.0 3.3 +0.3 2.8
Post-9/11 Veterans 3.3 3.7 +0.4 3.3
Gulf-War I Era Veterans 2.8 3.6 +0.8 2.3
WWII, Korean War and Vietnam Era 3.1 3.0 -0.1 2.5
All Nonveterans 3.5 4.0 +0.5 3.6

 

UNEMPLOYMENT RATES FOR VETERANS
Demographic Category December 2023 January 2024 CHANGE   (+/-) Annual Averages 2023
18–24 7.7 11.0 +3.3 7.8
25-34 4.5 6.7 +2.2 4.0
35-44 2.4 2.5 +0.1 3.0
45-54 2.8 2.2 -0.6 2.0
55-64 2.5 2.6 +0.1 2.3
65 and older 2.8 3.3 +0.5 2.6





Male 2.9 3.1 +0.2 2.7
Female 3.3 4.8 +1.5 3.2





White, Anglo, Caucasian 2.6 3.0 +0.4 2.7
Black or African American 4.9 3.4 -1.5 3.3
Hispanic, Latino/a, or Spanish Origin 3.4 5.4 +2.0 2.9
Asian or Asian American 3.6 6.8 +3.2 2.5

 

UNEMPLOYMENT RATES FOR POST-9/11 VETERANS
Demographic Category December 2023 January 2024 CHANGE   (+/-) Annual Averages 2023
18–24 7.7 11.0 +3.3 7.8
25-34 4.5 6.7 +2.2 4.0
35-44 2.4 1.8 -0.6 2.8
45-54 3.3 2.7 -0.6 2.0
55-64 1.0 0.8 -0.2 2.8
65 and older  – 1.1





Male 3.4 3.5 +0.1 3.2
Female 2.4 4.6 +2.2 3.4





White, Anglo, Caucasian 2.9 3.2 +0.3 3.2
Black or African American 4.7 4.8 +0.1 4.3
Hispanic, Latino/a, or Spanish Origin 5.0 6.6 +1.6 3.8
Asian or Asian American 1.1 1.2 +0.1 1.0

 

UNEMPLOYMENT RATES FOR NONVETERANS
Demographic Category December 2023 January 2024 CHANGE   (+/-) Annual Averages 2023
18–24 6.4 7.6 +1.2 7.5
25-34 4.0 4.3 +0.3 3.9
35-44 2.9 3.4 +0.5 2.8
45-54 2.6 3.2 +0.6 2.5
55-64 2.6 2.9 +0.3 2.6
65 and older 2.8 4.0 +1.2 2.8





Male 3.8 4.6 +0.8 3.8
Female 3.1 3.4 +0.3 3.4





White, Anglo, Caucasian 3.2 3.8 +0.6 3.2
Black or African American 4.6 5.6 +1.0 5.5
Hispanic, Latino/a, or Spanish Origin 4.9 5.7 +0.8 4.5
Asian or Asian American 2.9 2.9 0.0 3.0

 

NOTE: Although the BLS reports the national average for those 16 and over, the tables above include only those that are 18 and over to make a more accurate comparison to the veteran population. Post-9/11 are of the Gulf War Era II (September 2001-present). Other periods of service include Gulf War Era I (August 1990-August 2001), Vietnam Era (August 1964-April 1975), Korean War (July 1950-January 1955), World War II (December 1941-December 1946). Veterans who served in more than one wartime period are classified only in the most recent one. Veterans who served during one of the selected wartime periods and another peacetime period are classified only in the wartime period. The minority-by-gender unemployment rates are not displayed due to small sample size and are more appropriately displayed as annual averages

[1] https://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm