Is There Hope For The Young Under-Employed American?

Is There Hope For The Young Under-Employed American?

working poorSince the economy is supposed to be undergoing a recovery after literally years of performing sluggishly, you’d think that would mean that employment would be up in all age groups.

But that’s not the case and even more surprising is the fact that the group suffering the most from both unemployment and under-employment is those who are between the ages of 18 and 29.

Unemployment Among Youth

The most recent jobless rate for youth is twice that of the rate of unemployment for other age groups. It comes in at a dismal 16.1%. You do have to take into consideration the fact that the jobless rate only includes those who work less than 30 hours per week. So some of this 16.1% group are still in school and aren’t able to work full-time, but even so the numbers are pretty anemic.

Historically this group has always had relatively high unemployment, especially when it came to full-time work. But underemployment is perhaps becoming just as big a problem.

Underemployment Among Youth

A recent poll shows that the percentage of young people who are employed full-time is less than it’s been over the previous three years. Currently, only 43.6% of Americans between the ages of 18 and 29 hold down a full-time job. That’s down around three percent from previous figures.

And that’s looking at the bright side of things because apparently this number doesn’t include young people who have become discouraged and stopped looking for work completely.

So between unemployment and under-employment, young Americans are having a difficult time gaining a foothold in the job market. In fact, among nations considered to be wealthy, America ranks at the bottom in terms of what is referred to as youth ‘nonemployment’.

What Can Be Done?

If you are in this age group, you may be wondering if there’s anything you can do to beat the odds. Two things stand out: education and self-employment.

When your parents and your teachers urge you to stay in school, you’d be smart to listen to this advice. That’s because the same poll mentioned earlier also discovered that education makes a huge difference when it comes to being employed full-time.

Those with a college degree are twice as likely as those who don’t have a degree to hold down a full-time job. So staying in school is certainly just as important as it has always been, perhaps even more so today.

But even a good education is no guarantee that you’ll find a job in your field right away. And if you’re like many others, you may be faced with a mountain of debt from student loans when you do leave school.

One opportunity that is open to virtually anyone is self-employment. This can run the gamut from making and selling your own products, to selling someone else’s products, to providing a service and more.

Best of all, you don’t need to run an off-line business to do any of that. With the Internet becoming more and more a part of everyday life, the opportunities to make a living online are increasing.

There has never been a better time to take advantage of this growing trend than right now. It could be your ticket to reducing your debt load and start earning right away.  At the very least, it could be a way to put a few extra dollars in your pocket while you’re waiting for that elusive full-time job.


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