Hispanics Owe Trump Nothing

Stephanie Román, Senior Policy Analyst, Policy and Advocacy


In the last two weeks, President Donald Trump, his spokesperson Kayleigh McEnany, and a number of conservative pundits have been bragging about Hispanics having the lowest unemployment rate in decades. Yes, Hispanic unemployment is at its lowest level since it started being reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the early 1970s. In the first four months of this year, Hispanic unemployment has averaged 4.5%, a 10% decline from the same period in 2018 when it was 4.95%.

Hispanic Unemployment Rate, %

Data Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

However, there are a number of problems with the Trump administration trying to take credit for this level of unemployment. First, unemployment data do not take into account dispirited people who have not been able to find jobs and have dropped out of the labor force. Secondly, the Latino job quality, such as the combination of factors like earnings, benefits, job security, and paid leave, remains a significant challenge, leaving many workers and their families struggling to make ends meet. Thirdly, the Hispanic unemployment rate declines Trump cites actually began in 2011 during President Barack Obama’s administration. Moreover, the size of unemployment decreases during the Obama years were much larger than under the Trump administration; in fact, the size of unemployment decreases have been become smaller under the Trump administration.

Hispanic Unemployment Rate Change, %

Data Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Importantly, “Latinos and the Great Recession: 10 Years

Keep reading this article on Forbes Small Business.

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