Workers in the US with less education have been hard hit by unemployment and low wages, since June 2009, the date named by the National Bureau of Economic Research as the “official” end of the recession in mid-2009.
Figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show that workers who do not finish high school make on average about $23,400 a year, while those with high school diplomas make $33,500. Both compare poorly to those with a four-year college degree, who average $54,700, the bureau found.
Drawing on these statistics, a recent article from the Wall Street Journal notes that by 2020 there will be 6 million more workers without high school diplomas than there will be jobs available to them, according to a 2011 McKinsey Global Institute study. This is mainly due to the fact that industries that normally hire less-educated workers, such as construction and low-end manufacturing, have continued to decline in the recession.
Unemployment remains high for the less educated. While the official jobless rate for those with college degrees stands at 4.2 percent, this compares to an 8.4 percent jobless rate for those without a high school diploma, which is slightly higher than the national rate. Youth unemployment is particularly high, 23.2 percent, according to BLS figures. Read more......