Thursday, August 04, 2011

The Jobless Recovery and the Education Gap, II

Here's more evidence that the weakness in the current job market is directly related to educational attainment, and job losses have been greatest for workers without a high school degree (almost a 20 percent loss of jobs since 2007), and to a lesser extent for those workers with only a high school diploma (almost 10 percent).  In contrast, employment of college graduates is actually higher now than in January 2007 by about 5 percent.  

I haven't checked yet for the last two jobless recoveries in 1991-1992 and 2002, but it's possible that the current jobless recovery will be more severe and will last longer than the previous two because of the weak demand today for workers with less than a high school diploma.  And it's also possible that the weakness in job growth during the last two jobless recoveries reflected weak demand for workers with no high school diploma, much more than weak demand for college graduates.   More to follow.


At 8/04/2011 3:45 PM, Blogger Jason said...

Mark - can you include employment data on those workers with professional credentials?

At 8/04/2011 4:07 PM, Blogger Benjamin Cole said...

This jobless recovery will be worse than earlier ones as the Fed has hit zero bound, and is unwilling to use other tools to bring about expansion.

We are dead in the water, and taking on same.

We will, however, have minute rates of inflation, or even deflation.

Oh, glory.

Bernanke-san, thank you.

At 8/04/2011 4:22 PM, Blogger Ironman said...

I wonder what the age profile is for each - the downward trajectory of the "Less than High School Diploma" group looks awfully similar to the Age 16-19 job loss trajectory.

Could an increasing minimum wage, rather than recession, be the primary culprit here?

At 8/04/2011 4:23 PM, Blogger 95BSharpshooter said...

Of course, since 2000 or so, those with degrees that were under 50 years old had it MUCH better (and, yes, ALL businesses are technician these days, so don't cop-out with high tech).

Ten years ago I warned a family friend, who was 28, to be cautious as he approached 40. Well. with his BSEE and MSCS, and MBA he's now been out of work for a year.

Interesting, too, how many VP's and Director's I see in their late 20's and early 30's.

At 8/04/2011 4:33 PM, Blogger Charles said...

#1 construction, #2 huge increases in the minimum wage, #3 99 weeks of unemployment benefits.

At 8/04/2011 5:33 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

Firms tend to hire the least productive workers last and fire them first.

Also, wages are too low, federal taxes are too high, and many states raised taxes, fees, fines, fares, tolls, tuition, etc.

Moreover, there's too much uncertainty and too little optimism, in part, from overregulation.

At 8/04/2011 5:52 PM, Blogger McKibbinUSA said...


At 8/04/2011 5:54 PM, Blogger PeakTrader said...

We haven't replaced 7 million jobs lost in the recession, which excludes 125,000 to 150,000 jobs a month over the past 3 1/2 years that are needed for population growth.

At 8/04/2011 6:26 PM, Blogger rjs said...

with GDP growth at 0.4% & 1.3% for the last 2 quarters, calling it a recoveryless recovery would be more appropriate...

jobs are actually very much in line with GDP growth (see okun's law)

At 8/04/2011 6:31 PM, Blogger Michael E. Marotta said...

After 25 years as a programmer and technical writer, I could not get an interview without a degree. So, I completed a bachelor's (2008) and a master's (2010). Still without work, I am moving from Ann Arbor to Austin. I spent two weeks there in late July and prospects are much better than here.

I suggest that the data be disaggregated by geography.

At 8/06/2011 11:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The question is why do we allow this employer-driven market, ignoring any real ability to train someone?

That is, we ask practically nothing of the employers to accept/train people but ask everything of people who want to work with respect to education.

Handing it completely to the employer isn't the answer here, yet that happens.

At 8/07/2011 10:30 AM, Blogger morganovich said...


that is a ridiculous statement that just shows your ignorance of commerce, fascist tendencies, and staggering level of entitlement.

why do "we allow"? it's a free country last i checked. cool your jets there mussolini.

companies owe you nothing.

hiring is a consensual act.

you must have somehting they want, and they must have somehting you want.

if either one of you does not, then no hire.

by your logic, why don't we force consumers to buy more GM cars to provide jobs.

how about it seth? let's force you to buy a new car every year even if you don't want one.

how is that any different than forcing a company to hire?

At 8/07/2011 10:31 AM, Blogger morganovich said...


and what are these magical tools to which you refer?


Post a Comment

<< Home