Veterans’ unemployment edges down but still high

WASHINGTON (AP) — New Labor Department figures show the unemployment rate for working-age veterans who served on active duty in the U.S. armed forces since September 2001 edged down slightly in 2013, to 9.0 percent. But the report also says that the rate remained well above the overall civilian unemployment figure of 6.7 percent.

The decrease followed a decline to 9.9 percent in 2012.

The statistics cover veterans who served on active duty in the U.S. armed forces at any time since September 2001, a group referred to as Gulf War-era veterans.

Still, the number was far higher than the overall unemployment level in the United States, which averaged 7.4 percent in 2013 and finished the year with a 6.7 percent overall rate for December. It was also 6.7 percent in February 2014.