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News from EPI Michigan has highest unemployment rate for African Americans in nation

Michigan’s African American unemployment rate is the highest in the nation among states with large enough black populations to measure unemployment, a new Economic Policy Institute Issue Brief finds. In Ongoing Joblessness in Michigan: Unemployment rate for African Americans tops in nation, more than double the state’s white rate, EPI researchers Douglas Hall and Mary Gable find that the African American unemployment rate in Michigan reached 18.7 percent—nearly one in five of the state’s black workers—in the fourth quarter of 2012, about two-and-a-half times that of the white unemployment rate of 7.5 percent. The black unemployment rate in Michigan was 4.7 percentage points higher than the national black unemployment rate of 14.0 percent and ranked highest among the 24 states with large enough black populations to measure unemployment. Michigan’s white unemployment rate was ninth highest in the nation.