BET founder Robert Johnson, the nation’s first black publicly listed billionaire, said during a CNBC appearance on Friday that black Americans should be encouraged by the growing economy under President Trump.
“Something is going right,” said Johnson, owner and chairman of Bethesda-based asset management firm RLJ Companies.
He cited the December jobs report showing that unemployment among black workers was at its lowest since the Labor Department began tracking the data in 1972.
Black unemployment did fall to 6.8 percent in December, before rising and dipping again to 6.9 percent in March, according to the latest jobs numbers released Friday. But black unemployment remains nearly double the white unemployment rate of 3.6 percent, even though the gap has narrowed somewhat.
Johnson, during his appearance on “Squawk Box” on Friday morning before the March jobs report was released, was optimistic about how black Americans will continue to fare economically.
“You have to take encouragement from what’s happening in the labor force and the job market,” Johnson said. “When you look at African American unemployment, in over 50 years since the Bureau of Labor Statistics has been keeping the numbers, you’ve never had two things: African American unemployment this low and the spread between unemployment among whites and African Americans narrowing.