Spotlight on Statistics

February 2009

African American History Month

Chart Data

Percent distribution of black or African American labor force and total labor force by age, 2008
Percent distribution
Black or African American Total (all races)

16-24 years

15.6 14.3

25-34 years

24.4 21.6

35-44 years

24.3 22.7

45-54 years

22.2 23.3

55-64 years

10.8 14.0

65 years & over

2.7 4.0

Black or African American employed persons and total employed persons, 16 years and over, by industry, 2008
Percent distribution
Black or African American Total (all races)

Education and health services

27.9 21.6

Wholesale and retail trade

12.9 14.2

Manufacturing

9.5 10.9

Professional and business services

9.1 10.7

Leisure and hospitality

8.8 8.8

Transportation and utilities

7.7 5.3

Public administration

6.5 4.7

Financial activities

6.3 7.0

Other services

4.3 4.8

Construction

3.8 7.5

Information

2.6 2.4

Agriculture and related industries

0.3 1.5

Mining

0.3 0.6

Educational attainment of blacks or African Americans in the labor force, 25 to 64 years, March 1970 and March 2008 (percent distribution)
Year Less than a high school diploma High school graduates, no college Some college or associate degree Bachelor’s degree and higher

1970

56 28 8 8

2008

10 35 31 23

NOTE: Data for 1970 refer to the black and other races group; data for 2008 refer to persons who are black or African American only. Since 1992, data on educational attainment have been based on the "highest diploma or degree received," rather than the "number of years of school completed." Percents may not sum to 100 due to rounding.

Median usual weekly earnings of black or African American full-time wage and salary workers 25 years and over by educational attainment, 2008
Dollars

Bachelor’s degree and higher

912

Some college or associate degree

608

High school graduates, no college

515

Less than a high school diploma

408

Unemployment rates of blacks or African Americans age 25 years and over by educational attainment, 1998-2008 (percent)
Year Less than a high school diploma High school graduates, no college Some college or associate degree Bachelor's degree or higher

1998

11.6 7.4 5.1 2.9

1999

11.6 6.3 4.4 2.7

2000

10.7 6.4 4.0 2.5

2001

11.8 7.4 5.0 2.7

2002

13.3 8.8 6.7 4.2

2003

13.9 9.3 7.9 4.5

2004

15.5 8.7 7.6 4.3

2005

14.4 8.5 6.9 3.5

2006

12.8 8.0 6.2 2.8

2007

12.0 7.3 5.5 3.0

2008

14.5 9.3 7.4 4.0

Average time use of employed blacks or African Americans and all employed persons, 18 years and over, on workdays, 2007
Average hours per workday
Employed Blacks or African Americans All employed persons

Work & work-related activities

8.6 8.3

Sleeping

7.4 7.8

Leisure & sports activities

3.3 3.2

Grooming

1.0 0.8

Eating & drinking

0.9 1.1

Household activities

0.8 1.1

Other activities

0.6 0.4

Purchasing goods & services

0.6 0.5

Caring for & helping others

0.5 0.6

Organizational, civic, & religious activities

0.3 0.2

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