[ABOUT THE ECONOMY]
- “[Economic] Growth in 2010 was 3%, and in 2011, it was 1.7%. Current growth rate looks to be about 2%, according to the consensus of economists polled by Blue Chip Economic Indicators. Sadly, we have never recovered from the recession. The economy has not even returned to its long-term growth rate and is certainly not making up for lost ground. No doubt, there are favorable economic numbers to be found, but overall we continue to struggle.” ~ “The Worst Economic Recovery in History,” The Wall Street Journal
- “Over four years since the recession started, there are still 25 million Americans unemployed or underemployed . . . Instead of recovery, America has suffered the longest period of unemployment near 9 percent or above since the Great Depression . . . The unemployment rate with the full measure of discouraged workers is reported at http://www.shadowstats.com as about 23 percent, which is depression level of unemployment.” ~ “The Worst Economic Recovery Since the Great Depression,” Forbes
- “The current crisis is rooted in the sub-prime meltdown that we began to hear about in the summer of 2007 as the real estate bubble burst and mortgage defaults began to climb. During the boom years, mortgage brokers, lured by the heady combination of big commissions and little regulatory oversight, talked buyers with poor credit into accepting expensive housing mortgages with little or no down payment and no credit checks. Banks and other financial institutions typically repackaged these debts with other risky debts and sold them to worldwide investors as “collateralized debt obligations” (those CDOs you’ve been hearing so much about – basically bundles of bad debt).” ~ “Financial Crisis 101: What Happened? Why is Everyone Freaking Out?” The Understory
- “The One Percent of the One Percent are not your average Americans. Overwhelmingly, they are corporate executives, investors, lobbyists, and lawyers . . .In the 2010 election cycle, the average One Percent of the One Percenter spent $28,913, more than the median individual income of $26,346 . . . 80 percent of party committee money now comes from these elite donors.” ~ “The Political One Percent of the One Percent,” Sunlight Foundation
[ABOUT STUDENT LOAN DEBT]
- “Today it is 400 percent more expensive to go to college in the United States than it was just 30 years ago .” ~ “16 Shocking Facts About Student Loan Debt and the Great College Education Scam,” Business Insider
- “Two thirds of college students graduate with student loans. . .Total student loan debt in the United States is increasing at a rate of approximately $2,853.88 per second.” ~ “16 Shocking Facts About Student Loan Debt and the Great College Education Scam,” Business Insider
- “The outstanding student loan balance now stands at $870 billion, surpassing the total credit card balance ($693 billion).” ~ “Grading Student Loans,” Federal Reserve Bank of New York
[ABOUT POST COLLEGE PROFESSIONAL LIFE]
- “In the United States today, 24.5 percent of all retail sales persons have a college degree . . . There are 365,000 cashiers in the United States today that have college degrees . . . 18,000 parking lot attendants have college degrees . . . 317,000 waiters and waitresses have college degrees. “ ~ “16 Shocking Facts About Student Loan Debt and the Great College Education Scam,” Business Insider
- “In 1992, there were 5.1 million underemployed college graduates in the United States. In 2008, there were 17 million underemployed college graduates in the United States.”~ “16 Shocking Facts About Student Loan Debt and the Great College Education Scam,” Business Insider
- “Nearly 14% of graduates from the classes of 2006 through 2010 can’t find full-time work, and overall just 55.3% of people ages 16 to 29 have jobs.” ~ “The Kids Are Actually Sort Of Alright,”New York Magazine
- The average number of job changes for people between the ages of 20 – 29 in the U.S. is seven (U.S. Bureau of the Census, 2009).
[ABOUT EMERGING ADULTHOOD]
- “Fifty years ago, most young people in [industrialized] countries had entered stable adult roles by their late teens early twenties … Most young men were full time workers by the end of their teens. Relatively few women pursued occupations outside of the home, and the median age of marriage in 1960 was around age 20 for women [and 22 for men] (Arnett, 2011).”
- The average age for marriage in the U.S. is now 26 for women and 28 for men (U.S. Bureau of the Census, 2009).
- More than 60 percent of young adults in the U.S. pursue education and training beyond secondary school, a higher proportion than ever before (National Center for Education Statistics, 2009).
- “Emerging adulthood is viewed by emerging adults as a time when they need to move away from dependence on their parents and show that they can manage their lives on their own … Only after this is accomplished do they feel they can enter into long term binding commitments (Arnett, 2009).”
- “Sociologists traditionally define the ‘transition to adulthood’ as marked by five milestones: completing school, leaving home, becoming financially independent, marrying and having a child. In 1960, 77 percent of women and 65 percent of men had, by the time they reached 30, passed all five milestones. Among 30-year-olds in 2000, according to data from the United States Census Bureau, fewer than half of the women and one-third of the men had done so.” ~ “What Is It About 20-Somethings?” The NY Times
What these facts prove is that due to the various external circumstances highlighted above (student debt, job scarcity, a mortgage crises, and increased income inequality), 20-somethings/Millennials are taking our dear sweet time plodding a path toward adulthood. We walk in zig-zagged lines. Add these stats to your tool pack.