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April 24, 2012 (The Editor’s Desk is updated each business day.)

Length of job search for the unemployed

Median number of weeks of unemployment for persons who became employed or left the labor force, 1994–2011 annual averages
Year Became employed Left the labor force

1994

5.4 9.1

1995

4.8 8.3

1996

4.7 7.6

1997

4.5 7.6

1998

4.2 6.9

1999

4.1 6.8

2000

4.0 6.5

2001

4.1 6.9

2002

5.6 8.7

2003

6.1 9.6

2004

6.0 9.6

2005

5.4 8.6

2006

5.1 8.3

2007

5.2 8.7

2008

5.6 9.5

2009

8.4 15.2

2010

10.4 20.0

2011

10.0 21.4

These data are featured in the TED article, Length of job search for the unemployed.

 

Percent distribution of unemployed men and women who found jobs by the number of weeks spent searching, annual averages, 2007 and 2011
Weeks of unemployment Men Women
2007 2011 2007 2011

Total

100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0

Fewer than 5 weeks

48.7 35.3 49.4 35.3

5 to 14 weeks

29.6 23.7 29.9 26.8

15 to 26 weeks

11.9 13.6 10.7 12.2

27 to 52 weeks

6.8 14.1 7.6 13.3

53 weeks or more

3.1 13.2 2.4 12.4

These data are featured in the TED article, Length of job search for the unemployed.