2013 Union Membership Steady at 11.3%

U.S. union membership for 2013 remained at 11.3%, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report (link opens as PDF) released today.

That puts total dues-paying membership at 14.5 million, nearly unchanged from 2012's number. The majority of members come from the public sector, where rates reached 35.3%. In the private sector, union membership clocked in at just 6.7%.

Within the private sector, utility workers saw a 25.6% union membership rate last year, followed by transportation/warehousing (19.6%) and telecommunications (14.4%). Only 1% of agriculture and finance workers belonged to a union. industries with high unionization rates included utilities (25.6 percent), transportation and warehousing (19.6 percent), telecommunications (14.4 percent)...rates occurred in agriculture and related industries (1.0 percent), finance (1.0 percent)

New York state had the highest union membership (24.4%), while North Carolina's rate reached just 3% for 2013. Men were more likely to be unionized than women, and African-Americans were more likely to hold union memberships than white, Asian, or Hispanic workers.Among states, New York continued to have the highest union membership rate (24.4 percent), and North Carolina had the lowest rate (3.0 percent) Men had a higher union membership rate... Black workers were more likely to be union members than white, Asian, or Hispanic workers.

Looking back, the union membership rate stood at 20.1% in 1983, the first year for which membership data were collected. The share of workers belonging to unions peaked in the 1950s at about 30%.In 1983, the first year for which comparable union data are available, the union membership rate was 

Although the rate of membership among all workers didn't budge in 2013, the overall number of union members grew slightly, rose about 162,000. Unions added about 282,000 new members in the private sector as the economy improved. But that was partly offset by the loss of 118,000 members in the public sector, as state and local governments and public school districts continued to face financial pressure from shrinking budgets.

According to today's report, in 2013, among full-time wage and salary workers, union members had median usual weekly earnings of $950, while those who were not union members had median weekly earnings of $750.

-- Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.


Read/Post Comments (2) | Recommend This Article (1)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2014, at 3:17 PM, comosichiam wrote:

    Public unions should have never been allowed they are a scourge on the tax payers the vast majority of them are incompetents that could never make it in the private sector. Their icon Franklin Roosevelt clearly stated no public sector unions ever. Look around and see what we have now sad.

  • Report this Comment On January 24, 2014, at 6:38 PM, todamo13 wrote:

    Wow, what an ignorant comment ^

Add your comment.

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 2808450, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 8/31/2015 1:03:18 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Justin Loiseau

Energy and Macroeconomic Specialist keeping investors up to date with macro news, utilities, and good companies doing good things.

Today's Market

updated 2 days ago Sponsored by:
DOW 16,643.01 -11.76 -0.07%
S&P 500 1,988.87 1.21 0.06%
NASD 4,828.33 15.62 0.32%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes