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A Profile of Older Americans: 2004

Employment

In 2003, 5.0 million (14.4 %) Americans age 65 and over were in the labor force (working or actively seeking work), including 3.3 million men (18.3%) and 2.1 million women (10.7%). They constituted 3.4% of the U.S. labor force. About 3.6% were unemployed. Labor force participation of men 65+ decreased steadily from 2 of 3 in 1900 to 15.8% in 1985, and has stayed at 16%-18% since then. The participation rate for women 65+ rose slightly from 1 of 12 in 1900 to 10.8% in 1956, fell to 7.3% in 1985, and has been around 8%-10% since 1988.

(Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics web-site: http://www.bls.gov/cps/home.htm)

 

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Last Modified: 12/31/1600