*Since the current recession first gripped the economy in December 2007, the unemployment rate among African Americans has been on a near-steady rise to Depression era levels.

But according to the Labor Department report released Friday, joblessness among Blacks showed significant improvement in May.

While African Americans are still more likely to be unemployed than any other segment of the population, their jobless rate fell a full percentage point last month – dropping from 16.5 percent in April to 15.5 percent in May.

The improvement in the Black jobless picture resulted in part from an addition of 431,000 new jobs to the beleaguered economy. However, the bulk of the new jobs resulted from government hiring of persons to conduct the 2010 Census.

The private business sector is still slow to produce new jobs. The 15.5 percent Black unemployment rate contrasted with an 8.8 percent jobless rate for whites and one of 12.4 percent for Hispanics.

Meanwhile, the unemployment rate for Asian Americans was the best in the nation – standing at only 7.5 percent.  (source: Taylor Media Services – www.blacknewsjournal.net)