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Study: Women, older workers hit harder by unemployment

UNITED STATES - OCTOBER 1: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., holds her weekly news conference on Wednesday, OCT. 1, 2014. Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call,Inc.

The Congressional Budget Office released a study Tuesday that said women, people with a college degree and people over 55 years old make up a greater proportion of the unemployed in 2014 than they did in 2007, just before the Great Recession.

CBO also said slightly fewer white people are unemployed in 2014 compared to 7 years ago, while Hispanics and blacks make up a slightly bigger proportion of the unemployed.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., requested a study that found women and older workers are making more a bigger portion of the unemployed in the last several years. Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call,Inc.

The study was requested by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who asked about how the ranks of the unemployed have changed between 2007 and 2014. It looked at both unemployment and long-term unemployment, which is defined as people out of work for more than 26 weeks.

According to CBO, long-term unemployment peaked in 2010 at 4.3 percent and has called to 1.9 percent by late 2014. However, it's still about a percentage point higher than the average rate from 2001 to 2007.

Women make up a larger portion of both the unemployed and the long-term unemployed in 2014, when compared to 2007. For example, women were 41 percent of the unemployed in 2007, but 44 percent this year.

And while women were 35 percent of the long-term unemployed 7 years ago, they are now 44 percent of that group.

For college graduates, the difference is seen most clearly in the change in long-term unemployed. In 2007, college graduates were just 8 percent of that group, but by 2014 they were 15 percent.

The numbers were less dramatic when broken down by race. Whites were 57 percent of the unemployed in 2007, and 53 percent in 2014.

Blacks made up 19 percent of the unemployed in 2007, and 21 percent in 2014. Hispanics also increased two percentage points, from 17 to 19.

Blacks actually improved their position when it comes to the long-term unemployed — they were 25 percent of that group in 2007, and 23 percent in 2014. Hispanics went from 14 to 18 percent in the same period.

Read CBO's report here:

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