Data suggest many teens who aren't working chose not to look

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Many job seekers have dropped out of the labor force not because they've gotten discouraged, but by choice.

The unemployment rate has been declining, in part because of a declining labor participation rate.

A new analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics data by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray and Christmas finds the biggest decline in labor force participation is among 16- to 19-year-olds. It's down to a record low 30.4 percent.

But contrary to reports that job seekers have gotten discouraged and dropped out, many of them just don't want a job. Of the 11.6 million teens not in the labor force, only about 8.3 percent said they want a job. Less than one percent indicated they were discouraged.

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