UNH News Release: Carsey Institute: 39 Percent of Unemployed Americans Are Seeking Work for More Than Six Months
January 22, 2014
Carsey Institute: 39 Percent of Unemployed Americans Are Seeking Work for More Than Six Months
New UNH Research Looks at Long-Term Unemployment in Wake of the Recession
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Unemployment Rate and Long-Term Unemployed, 2007-2013

DURHAM, N.H. – Thirty-nine percent of unemployed Americans are experiencing long-term unemployment in the wake of the 2008 recession, which is more than double the percent unemployed more than six months but actively seeking work in 2007, according to new research about trends in long-term unemployment since the recession from the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire.

“As the debate about the extension of the federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation program continues, it is important to gain an understanding of the long-term unemployed in terms of their demographic and economic characteristics and how those characteristics differ across place. Doing so can help better target strategies for alleviating the negative effects of long-term unemployment,” said Andrew Schaefer, doctoral candidate in sociology at UNH and a research assistant at the Carsey Institute.

The research is presented in the Carsey Institute brief “The Long-Term Unemployed in the Wake of the Great Recession.”

According to Schaefer, the percentage of unemployed workers who were seeking employment for more than six months more than doubled between 2007 and 2013, from 18.4 percent to 39.3 percent.

In addition, the percentage of women among the long-term unemployed has increased in the last six years, from 35 in 2007 to 44 percent in 2013. In contrast, the percentage of men among the long-term unemployed decreased from 65 percent in 2007 to 56 percent in 2013.

Schaefer also found that the long-term unemployed are more likely than the short-term unemployed to live in urban areas; 87 percent of the long-term unemployed live in urban areas compared to 83 percent of the short-term unemployed. The urban long-term unemployed are more likely to be older, more racially and ethnically diverse, higher educated, and more likely to be married with children, but less likely to be poor than their rural counterparts.

This research is based on data from the 2007-2013 Annual Social and Economic Suppplement of the Current Population Survey. The research brief is available at http://carseyinstitute.unh.edu/publication/1007.

The Carsey Institute conducts policy research on vulnerable children, youth, and families and on sustainable community development. The institute gives policy makers and practitioners the timely, independent resources they need to effect change in their communities. For more information about the Carsey Institute, go to www.carseyinstitute.unh.edu.

The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a world-class public research university with the feel of a New England liberal arts college. A land, sea, and space-grant university, UNH is the state's flagship public institution, enrolling 12,300 undergraduate and 2,200 graduate students.

GRAPHICS
Unemployment Rate and Long-Term Unemployed, 2007-2013
http://www.unh.edu/news/img/carsey/ltunemployed1.jpg
Source: Carsey Institute at UNH

Diminishing Gender Gap Among the  Long-Term Unemployed, 2007 and 2013
http://www.unh.edu/news/img/carsey/ltunemployed2.jpg
Source: Carsey Institute at UNH

Percent of Long-Term Unemployed with a College or Advanced Degree By Place, 2007 and 2013
http://www.unh.edu/news/img/carsey/ltunemployed3.jpg
Source: Carsey Institute at UNH

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Researcher Andrew Schaefer is available to discuss the results of this study. He can be reached at apq62@wildcats.unh.edu and 603-657-6533.

Media Contact: Lori Wright | 603-862-0574 | UNH Media Relations | @unhnews | @unhsocialsci
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