The unemployment rate for U.S. Hispanics essentially remained flat in June, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Thursday.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for Hispanics was 7.8 percent in June, up slightly from the 7.7 percent in May, the agency said. The overall unemployment rate in the United States is 6.1 percent.
Companies added 288,000 jobs in June, renewing optimism that the economy is finally emerging from the deep recession. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, payroll totals now exceed pre-2008 recession levels.
With the improving economy, more Hispanics appear to be looking for work. The labor participation rate -- those who are employed or are seeking work -- was at 61.1 percent in June, the highest total in nearly a year.
When it comes to employment numbers for Latinos and Latinas, it's a mixed bag. The unemployment rate for women 20 years and over is 7.2 percent, decreasing 0.3 percent from May. For Hispanic men 20 years and over, the rate is 6.4 percent, jumping 0.2 percent compared to May.
The unemployment rate for Hispanic youths ages 16 to 19 skyrocketed in June. Although the numbers were not seasonally adjusted, the rate is 28.3 percent. In May, the unemployment rate stood at 18.2 percent for Hispanic youths. Economists expect the rate will likely be revised downward in the coming month.
President Obama speaking at a tech startup in Washington on Thursday said the recovery is taking hold but acknowledged there is more the federal government can do to create jobs. The president urged Congress to work with him to help reduce the unemployment rate.
Republicans had a different take on Thursday's unemployment figures, calling the jobs numbers dismal for Hispanics.
"The dismal Latino jobs report makes it clear Democrats haven't lived up to their promise of putting Hispanics back to work. Our community is still struggling and they deserve better," said Izzy Santa, RNC spokesperson in a press release. "Until the Hispanic community sees real economic relief, President Obama can expect to see his favorability ratings to continue to drop among the Hispanic community."
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