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Alberta coming out of recession

Alberta coming out of recession

Posted on: 9/12/2017 | Author: ATB Financial's Economics + Research Team

Part Two: Employment trends for youth

Yesterday, The Owl examined job trends by gender over the last three years. It showed that, while women consistently gained jobs throughout the recession, job growth for females has slowed in the recovery. Men faced the opposite trend.

Today, The Owl looks at how younger workers fared during the same period. As the graph below illustrates, workers aged 15 to 24 were clobbered during the downturn. Between August 2014 and August 2016, employment for this age cohort slumped 8 per cent. On the other hand, jobs for workers aged 25 and older continued to expand—albeit slowly (+0.6 per cent) and with a disproportionate number of part-time and lower paying jobs.

Now that the economy is gradually picking up momentum, employment prospects for young workers are not much better. Over the last 12 months, job opportunities for youth continued to decline (-1.2 per cent) while job growth for older workers has picked up the pace (+1.9 per cent).

A lot of this comes down to experience. Employers were forced to lay off workers during the downturn—typically, those with less seniority and fewer years of experience are the first to be let go. Now that the economy is slowly recovering, older workers with more experience are in a better position to land the jobs that are gradually trickling back.

Alberta job trends by age, graph

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