Youth employment trends

As a follow-up to my last post, where I showed R7 – the unemployment rate that includes involuntary part-time, I was curious what the longer term trend was regarding youth and part-time employment.

As you can see in the graph below, the proportion of 20-24 year olds engaged in full-time work has steadily fallen since 1980, accelerated during recessions.  This is in contrast to 25-34 year olds whose full-time employment rate falls during recessions, but increases between them.


And, as you might expect, the proportion of 20-24 year olds engaged in part-time work has increased steadily over the same period, while the part-time employment rate for 25-34 year olds has remained fairly stable since 1990.

Source: Statistics Canada, Cansim table 282-0002.



  • Looks to me more like snakes and ladders: the employment rate drops (dramatically) during recessions and for a while afterwards, then rises again. It then starts rising, though it takes years before it passes its end-of-recession level. The next recession pushes it still farther down. So you wouldn’t say it’s fallen steadily; it’s more of a ratcheting down effect.

  • Ken, fair enough. I guess I meant that the full-time employment rate for 20-24 year olds was lower at the beginning of each successive recession. And the 90’s recession was particularly harsh for ratcheting down / slow modest recovery.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *