posted on 10 April 2016
from Challenger Gray and Christmas
Teen employment, already at its highest level since 2009, should continue to increase in the summer months, according to a just-released outlook. However, the number of teens seeking and finding summer jobs during the summer months has declined in each of the last three years - a trend that is likely to continue in 2016.
Said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc."
While the job market may be more welcoming to teenagers, recent trends suggest that may not necessarily translate into increased summer job gains. In 2015, 1,160,000 16- to 19-year-olds found employment from May through July, which was 11 percent fewer than the 1,297,000 finding summer jobs in 2014.
Last summer marked the third consecutive year in which teen summer job gains declined from the previous year. However, even as summer job gains decline, overall teen employment is still on the rise.
As of February, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics counted approximately 4.6 million employed 16- to 19-year-olds. That is up from 4.4 million a year earlier. The February total is the highest for that month since 2009, when nearly 4.8 million teenagers were employed.
And, despite the 11 percent decline in summer job gains last year, teen employment reached a July peak of 5,696,000, the highest total since 2008. Said Challenger:
The percentage of teenagers participating in the labor force has been declining since the 1970s. Currently, only about one-third of teens participate in the labor force (meaning they are working or actively seeking employment).
Some teens want a job, but are not in the labor force for a variety of reasons, including the belief that no work is available, simply could not find work, lack school or training, or are currently in school. Others have transportation problems or have family responsibilities.
However, the group of teenagers who want jobs represented less than one-tenth of the 10.9 million teens who were not in the labor force in 2015, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics data. The overwhelming majority are not in the labor force by choice.
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