Six hundred and twenty-nine unemployed men were re-interviewed 9 months after initial measurement of their psychological health and commitment to the labour market. For those men remaining continuously unemployed between interviews, no further decrement was observed in mean General Health Questionnaire scores after 3 months without a job, but a significant deterioration was recorded for the sub-sample initially unemployed for less than 3 months. Small but significant declines were observed after 3 months on a single-item measure of reported health and on an 8-item index of commitment to the labour market. For those regaining paid work, all measures of health showed large improvements, and employment commitment was unchanged. Multiple regression analyses were used to examine factors associated with magnitude of changes during continuous unemployment, yielding a systematic pattern of significant relationships. For example, higher employment commitment at initial interview was significantly associated with a greater subsequent decline in psychological health, but not in physical health; reporting a chronic health impairment at initial interview was significantly associated with a greater subsequent decrement in physical health, but not in psychological health.