DETROIT (WWJ) – The Department of Labor released May unemployment figures Friday, which show an increase in unemployment to 16.5% for Americans ages 18 to 24.
Joblessness and underemployment continues to surge as workers under 30 have seen a 70% of net reduction in employment during the recession as the college graduating class of 2011 looks into an unemployed future piled with debt.
Currently, there are five times as many unemployed workers as there are jobs. In the recession, young workers are disproportionately represented in the ranks of the unemployed.
One-in-six young Americans are currently unemployed, and millions more are looking for full-time work.
A 2010 analysis of the youth labor market by the Economic Policy Institute reported:
- Workers under age 30 accounted for 70 percent of the net reduction in employment during this recession
- Workers under 30 are 2.5 times as likely to be affected by job loss than any other age group.
Suffering from unemployment at a young age has long-lasting effects. Studies link early unemployment to lower lifetime income, family instability and decreased happiness later in life.
Analysts say higher oil prices, stagnant wages and a depressed housing market are holding back the economy.
“If businesses fear a slow down, they cut back on hiring plans. That’s the problem,” said WWJ and FOX 2 Business Editor Murray Feldman.