Recession’s ill effects on millennials could last decades, experts worry

Effects of the Great Recession reached all age sectors of the working population, but experts are concerned those ill effects may linger longer for millennials.

Economic events like recessions tend to affect young people the most. However, members of the U.S.’s largest generation — millennials — have been set back farther than previous generations by economic hardships.

People ages 18 to 34 make up 40 percent of the country’s unemployed population. Some 28 million out of 70 million millennials are not enrolled in school and are making less than $10,000 per year.

“Research has shown that the scarring effect of unemployment on young people entering the workforce during a recession can affect their wage and salary income for up to 20 years,” said labor economist and policy analyst Catherine Ruetschlin, a visiting professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Another source of worry stems from wage inequality among millennials, which the website Fusion’s “wealth gap calculator” shows is more severe than among previous generations. The calculator suggests that an annual income of $105,000 places a millennial in the top 1 percent of his or her generation.

Read more from the Kansas City Star


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