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Long-term unemployment : almost 30% of jobless in U.S.

Once unemployed, more Americans are staying that way than before the recession, with 29.5% of jobless Americans now out of work for more than a year.

In the first quarter of the year, 3.9 million of the nearly 13.3 million unemployed workers in the country had been jobless for all or most of 2011. That’s more people than live in Oregon, according to the Pew Fiscal Analysis Initiative.

Long-term unemployment is less of a problem now than at its peak in the third quarter of last year, when 31.8% of jobless Americans were affected. But the current rate is still more than triple the 9.5% rate from the beginning of the recession.

“The longer workers remain unemployed, the more likely they may lose skills and professional contacts, making workforce reentry even more challenging,” researchers wrote in the Pew report. “Skill erosion may lead to lower future income for individuals and, for the economy as a whole, lower productivity and lost output.”…

via Long-term unemployment affects nearly 30% of jobless Americans – latimes.com.

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