Friday, February 25, 2011

National News: Older workers (yes... again!) and more

We've shared quite a few news articles about older workers and younger workers. The stories have talked about the obstacles and advantages faced by each group. Another piece this week from KGW discusses the difficult side of the story for older workers. It includes a revealing statistic: "The average length of unemployment for those 55 and older was 44.4 weeks in January, according to the U.S Department of Labor. For those 54 and under, it was 33.9 weeks."

The road to re-employment is generally long for older workers. Is that road also more difficult? Maybe so. See the full story.

In construction-related news: Sales of new homes are still squeaking along. In January, the volume of sales was down almost 20 percent from one year prior. There's a graph in the full article from CNN Money that very clearly shows the trend in new home sales. The current volume is about one-fifth its level during the housing boom. Builders have reduced their inventory of new homes, but in some places there's still an overstock.

In related news, the average home price in the U.S. is still sliding. Many real estate analysts predict continued declines during the next six months. Since it's not my area of expertise, I can't comment on whether that's an accurate prediction; I just know that it was cited in many news sources this week.

A little later on today Gail and I are planning to share some special announcements. It just so happens that I saw a McClatchy news piece this morning that relates to our own news...

During the recession, people who held on to their jobs spent a lot less time looking for new jobs. For one thing, there weren't as many opportunities. With the mass layoffs occurring all around, it was also a pretty scary time to job-hop. But now that the economy is starting to pick up, businesses are seeing more activity; they have a little more money and hiring is (slowly) increasing. Restless workers will start to spread their wings. Employers are already increasing their retention efforts. The original story has all the details.

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