Trends

Report: Official Estimates Underestimate Long-term Unemployment

Jan 12 2012

From the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR):

WASHINGTON - January 5 - The Great Recession pushed the share of the long-term unemployed (defined as being unemployed more than 6 months) to over 40 percent throughout 2010 and 2011.  But, a new report from the Center for Economic and Policy Research shows that this standard measure estimate understates the extent of long-term hardship in the U.S. labor market.

"Long-term unemployment rates have been at unprecedented levels for two years now, but the full group facing long-term hardship in the labor market is likely to be at least twice as high as the official figure," said John Schmitt, a co-author of the paper and a senior economist at the Center for Economic and Policy Research.

The report, “Down and Out: Measuring Long-term Hardship in the Labor Market,” proposes a broader definition of long-term unemployment that encompasses the underemployed and those workers experiencing long-term hardship in the labor market.