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Trump likes to cite black employment data as a positive economic indicator. It just got worse

  • President Donald Trump this week took credit for the drop in unemployment among blacks and African-America workers.
  • "African-American unemployment stands at the lowest rate ever recorded," Trump told Congress on Tuesday.
  • Not anymore. Last month, the jobless rate among blacks jumped nearly a full point to 7.7 percent,according the latest monthly data.
  • Even at its low point, the jobless rate for blacks has been roughly twice the rate for whites since the job recovery began in March 2010.

For the average American, the nearly 8-year-old recovery in the job market continues to make it easier to find steady work with a solid paycheck.

But the averages mask big disparities in the way the benefits of that recovery are being felt across racial and ethnic lines.

President Donald Trump during his State of the Union address Tuesday took credit for the ongoing strength in hiring, singling out the drop in unemployment among black workers.

"Unemployment claims have hit a 45-year low," Trump told Congress. "It's something I'm very proud of. African-American unemployment stands at the lowest rate ever recorded."

Not anymore. Last month, the jobless rate among blacks jumped nearly a full point to 7.7 percent, according to the latest monthly data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Even at its low point, the jobless rate for black Americans has been roughly twice the rate for whites since the job market recovery began in March 2010.

Those higher jobless rates for blacks may understate the overall level of unemployment for that group, which has a lower labor force participation rate than other groups tracked by the BLS. (The labor force participation rate measures the share of the overall population that is actively in the workforce and excludes, among others, those who have given up looking for a job.)