Long-Term Unempolyment - 4/1/14 | WYPR

Long-Term Unempolyment - 4/1/14

Apr 1, 2014

A new paper authored by three Princeton economists, including Alan B. Krueger, the former chairman of President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors, indicates that long-term unemployment is even more problematic than conventional wisdom suggests.  According to the paper, the long-term unemployed are "an unlucky subset of the unemployed." 

They tend to be a bit older, are often quite educated and a little less white – but as pointed out by an article authored by Binyamin Applebaum, they’re not that different from the broader pool of people who have lost jobs in recent years with 1 important exception – there’s a good chance that they’ll never work again. 

The Princeton economists discovered that few among the long-term unemployed appear capable of finding jobs in new industries.  These people often developed skills very specific to their prior employer and often need support to develop the skills needed to find jobs in expanding economic segments like healthcare, logistics, professional services and management. 

Many economists also hypothesize that biases against older workers or the suspicions that often accompany candidates who have been unemployed for lengthy periods contributed to keeping the long-term unemployed jobless.