New York Times article noted that millions of Americans have delayed their retirement
due to plummeting 401(k)s, lack of confidence in Social Security benefits
and increasing health care costs. Due to the increase of older workers
in the labor market, younger workers are facing a scarcity in available
jobs in certain industries.
According to recent reports from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number
of employed workers ages 16 to 24 has fallen by two million over the past
two years. Yet, the number of working Americans age 65 and over has risen
by over 700,000 over the same time span. In a decade perspective, the
number of working Americans age 65 and over has risen 11% from 10 years
ago. The number of working Americans age 16-24 has fallen 10% from a decade
ago. The employed number for Americans in the age range of 25-29 has fallen
7% from a decade ago.
Recent college graduates are finding it hard to break into certain industries.
Younger males with little or no college education have felt the harshest
employment impact because they often are the first to be laid off in an
economic downturn. People in this category found jobs easily when the
economy was healthy, but they now face the greatest competition from older,
more experienced workers. At the same time, many older workers say they
age discrimination in certain industries as some employers tend to favor more youthful and
energetic employees. "In a bad labor market, different groups perceive
that they're being discriminated against when the real problem is
they're being mistreated by the overall economy," said Teresa
Ghilarducci, an economics professor at the New School of Social Research
and author of "When I'm Sixty-Four."