Friday, May 3, 2013

Long-Term Joblessness Is Still A Major US Employment Problem: Almost 40 Percent Of The Unemployed Are Long-Term

Posted by Milton Recht:

As unemployment drops a bit and the Dow Jones crosses 15,000 for the first time on a better than expected job growth number, the US still faces a major employment and social problem with the long-term jobless.

From Bloomberg, "Long-Term Unemployment Is Turning Jobless Into Pariahs" by the Editors:
Long-term unemployment is one of the most vexing problems the U.S. faces, and today’s jobs report shows all-too-meager progress in fixing it.

The U.S. created 165,000 new jobs in April, pushing down the unemployment rate to 7.5 percent from March’s 7.6 percent. But as of the end of April, 4.4 million Americans, or 37 percent of the unemployed, had been without a job for 27 weeks or longer, barely better than March’s 39 percent. The U.S. can’t afford to write off more than 4 million people who would like to work but haven’t for more than six months.

Long-term joblessness peaked in April 2010 at 6.7 million, so the picture might seem to be improving. Hidden within that number is this troubling fact: The average unemployed person has been out of work for 36.5 weeks. That’s not much better than the December 2011 duration of 40.7 weeks, which was the longest since World War II. Long-term unemployment at the start of the recession in December 2007 was 1.3 million people, and the average duration was 16.6 weeks.

Terrible things happen to people when they are out of work for long periods, numerous studies show.

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