According to a new study by Resolution Foundation the pandemic has created a “U-shaped” employment crisis. The over 50s and the under 25s are financially hit hard by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. Unemployment rate for over 50s is the highest it’s been since the 1980s.

Findings from the study show employment rate dropped by 1.4% over past year for those aged 50 to 69. In comparison, those aged 25 to 49 had employment rate fall by 0.7%. However, the worst hit group are the 16-24, with employment falling by 3.9%.

Over 50s are also more likely to remain unemployed for longer time and suffer the biggest hits to their income when they return to work. Figures show estimates of 9.5% fall in hourly pay. In comparison, those in the 25 to 49 age group were hit with 4% drop in wage and the 16-24 actually had their wages increase by 5.1%.

The study shows that six months after losing their jobs just 62% of over 50s found work again. Whilst almost three quarters of those in the younger age groups were able to find employment again.

Nye Cominetti, senior economist at the Resolution Foundation, is quoted to have said: “The COVID-19 crisis has had a U-shaped effect on people’s employment prospects.

“While the youngest workers have been hardest hit by the crisis, older workers have also been badly affected, experiencing the biggest annual fall in employment since at least the 1980s.

“The cost of unemployment for older workers is particularly high.”

Cominetti suggested that the affected older workers may have to work longer to make up for the lost income or take an early retirement.

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