U.S. Labor Market - 8/12/14 | WYPR

U.S. Labor Market - 8/12/14

Aug 11, 2014

That the U.S. labor market’s rate of improvement has accelerated is apparent.  For the last six months, the nation has managed to add more than 200,000 jobs, the longest such winning streak since 1997.  But the quality of jobs being added continues to be mediocre, inducing many people to work more than one job.  For instance, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, 115,000 people in the U.S. who are over the age of 55 are working 3 jobs. 

That represents a 170 percent increase since 1994, when the corresponding statistic was 43,000 people and a 60 percent increase over 2006, when the figure stood at 73,000.  As reported by CNNmoney, many of these appear to have been dislocated from previous employment, including in industries such as manufacturing and communications, and are now trying to cobble together enough income to live. 

Many of these older workers may be settling for jobs that don’t pay very well, knowing that it often takes older workers much longer to secure positions.  According to a recent survey conducted by Rutgers University, nearly two-thirds of unemployed workers age 55 and older say that they were actively searching for a job for more than one year compared with just one third of younger workers.