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I'm beggining to sound like a broken record but is there something with German media that prevents them from making qualified claims?

In Greece a third of people under 25 is unemployed while early retirees draw opulent pensions.

I submit that before the austerity onslaught the average pension in general in Greece (never mind the significantly reduced early retirement pensions) was under 8000 Euros per annum and that only 15% of retirees of any sort made over 15.000 Euros. There is no way that one can thus significantly talk of opulent pensions as the stumbling block to youth employment.

Where do they get their numbers? Is there a Bild statistics RSS feed that every serious publication Germany must use?

And don't you love it how conveniently the reason for high unemployment is not enough labor flexibility? Having a decent pay and not being at the mercy of managerial socipaths, is a "privilege".... You must either be destitute and unemployed or poor and working, these are the available options in Spain it seems...

And that's Spiegel mind you, in the act of debunking even more preposterous negative stereotypes in German political disourse, hardly the worse one can do.

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom - William Blake

by talos (mihalis at gmail dot com) on Fri May 20th, 2011 at 06:17:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Spiegel:
In Greece a third of people under 25 is unemployed

The usual rubbish from ignorant or deliberately mendacious journalists. Greek under-25 Unemployment Rate in 2010, according to Eurostat, was 33%. That means 33% of the labour force ie (those who have a job + those who are officially seeking one). That excludes all under-25s who are inactive, principally due to education.

In Greece 2010, Eurostat reports an activity rate for the under-25s of 30%. That means, applying the unemployment rate to that to which it properly applies, the percentage of Greek under-25s that are seeking employment is 30/33%, or 10%.

That's not to belittle the importance of youth unemployment, just to say that this is false statistics in the service of a narrative.

Spiegel:

In Greece a third tenth of people under 25 is unemployed

Fixed.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 06:30:04 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yep, the only quibble is that at this particular juncture there is an unprecedented, in recent decades, demand for work even among students, thus making the actual computation difficult. 200.000 under 25s are registered in the Unemployment Office. The population of this age group (16-25) is, I estimate indirectly, around 1,5 million. Thus the true unemployed in the population 16-25 are ~17% of the relevant population. However I would bet a lot of money that the largest proportion of these are in the 23-25 group. I would also add that this number will not take into those that have abandoned trying and immigrants who would fear to apply to the unemployment office,...

The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom - William Blake
by talos (mihalis at gmail dot com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 07:08:24 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, it's hard to construct a view that takes the real situation into account, since the stats that are officially sanctioned are gross and insensitive to social reality, so underestimate the real problems people face.

And the group that is subject to the most misunderstanding/media manipulation is the 15-24 group - as you say, probably the biggest real problems are in the older part of the group (the younger part being mostly in fulltime education).

As you'll have understood, my point is to denounce external media distortions used in the service of a xenophobic narrative: "the young are out of work while the old are lolling around at society's cost" - neither term of which is as true as Spiegel's false facts make out.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 07:43:15 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, not exactly. Students having a job or looking for one are not counted as inactive (students having undeclared jobs - and not seeking one - are obviously counted as inactive):

Labour market participation by sex and age - Statistics explained

students having or seeking a job (as they are then classified as employed or unemployed instead of inactive persons, even if the job is a minor one).


"L'homme fut sûrement le voeu le plus fou des ténèbres " René Char
by Melanchthon on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 11:05:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But how do you know whether a student is seeking a job if there is no job to be found?

You can ask them, but surveys have other issues (with people who have stopped looking because they realise that it's futile, for instance).

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 04:08:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The question applies to all countries (more or less).

What bothers me in this is that, quite rightly, we wish to point out that young people are angry about their lack of prospects (whether they are currently formally unemployed or not). But the neolib narrative is only too happy to up the ante on that by talking about a third or half of under-25s looking for work. Why?

Because they have labour market reforms to sell us.

The whole (seemingly endless) media saga on youth unemployment, in which the official unemployment rate is never correctly construed, is about that: what you need is labour market "reforms".

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 05:10:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed, "reform" is always and everywhere the agenda.

Unemployment is low? The inflation monster is just around the corner, so we need to remove rigidities.

Unemployment is high? Removing labour market rigidities will make employers more likely to hire.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 05:13:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This is the poster that was used to call people to the initial demonstration last Sunday:

Youth without future

No house

No Job

No pension

No fear

Economics is politics by other means

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 05:22:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
JakeS:
how do you know whether a student is seeking a job if there is no job to be found?

When he/she is registered at the public employment service. If he/she is not, then he/she is counted as inactive.

"L'homme fut sûrement le voeu le plus fou des ténèbres " René Char

by Melanchthon on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 07:30:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
One possible move would be to encourage all to register at the public employment service every month during the same week.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 07:51:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
(The worst thing that could happen is that you get a crappy job. It probably won't last anyway.)

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat May 21st, 2011 at 07:52:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At least in Sweden almost no students are registered at the employment office. As students they are not eligible for unemployment benefits anyway, so there is no point. It is not like registering at the employment office gives you a job.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Sun May 22nd, 2011 at 06:25:00 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The employment office doesn't do part time jobs, then?

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon May 23rd, 2011 at 10:23:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The construction of the employment office was set up during the days of full employment, and might have served other purposes then. Since Sweden entered the club of large unemployment policy they largely handle the unemployment, checking that unemployed reaches various checks for unemployment aid (like not studying) and sending unemployed on various courses and programs, content depending on political trends.

The only useful service they provide for a student wanting a part-time job is the employment database, which is online and does not require any registration.

As an anecdote, a friend of mine who had not grasped the system tried to register at the unemployment office despite studying and described a dialogue that went:

  • You study so you do not qualify for any unemployemnt benefits.
  • I do not want benefits, I want a job.
  • Are you going to drop your studies?
  • No, but I also want a job.
  • But then you do not qualify for any unemployemnt benefits.

He left unregistered.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Mon May 23rd, 2011 at 03:04:35 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So there is an x/or function describing students and the employed. How very neo-con. Can't contaminate the sacred statistics. I presume there is no such category as "part time student", for employment purposes.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Mon May 23rd, 2011 at 08:05:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No, no.

Employed students are counted as employed, and therefore part of the workforce.

Unemployed students are counted as students, and thus not in the workforce.

Underemployed students are counted as employed (and thus in the work force) for the fraction of their time they are employed and students (and therefore not in the workforce) for the fraction of their time they are not employed.

The net result is to synthetically lower the reported unemployment rate for 16-25 yr-olds, in the same way various retirement programmes synthetically lower the rate for 50+ yr-olds (you are less likely to go into retirement if you have job prospects, so some early retirees would have not retired if there had been jobs available).

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 06:08:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
This is correct. However, European countries don't appear to apply the same rigorous measurement of student employment. So we have the great differences shown by the chart posted by Melanchthon upthread.

There, Danish under-25 inactivity is cited at less than 30%, which means, not only that a lot of students also have jobs, but that the fact is carefully recorded.

France, otoh, shows the reverse (not in the chart, but the numbers are well-known): around 70% under-25 inactivity - as if no students had a job, which is simply not the case. INSEE says that their Labour Force Survey counts students with jobs in the workforce. Something is going wrong in the recording process?

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 07:04:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There, Danish under-25 inactivity is cited at less than 30%, which means, not only that a lot of students also have jobs, but that the fact is carefully recorded.

The ability to tie all public in- and out-flows of funds (and births, and deaths, and hospitalisations, and crime, and changes of residence) to a particular personal or commercial identification code makes the Danish statistical service scarily accurate.

INSEE says that their Labour Force Survey counts students with jobs in the workforce. Something is going wrong in the recording process?

If they count the same way the Danish statistical service does, a student who works 5 hours a week is recorded as 14 % active. So if all students worked 5 hours a week and 15-20 % of the age group were not students or otherwise outside the labour force, you'd get around 30 % labour force participation rate.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 11:19:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Re France, there are a couple of big ifs there. I've seen no methodology that supports the view that INSEE does such detailed accounting. And, for this to work, all students would have to have a job. Which they don't, just as surely as a good many do.

Re Denmark, wow, I didn't realize it was that efficient.

by afew (afew(a in a circle)eurotrib_dot_com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 03:45:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Has been since the late '60s, when everything was standardised and tied to the central person and business registry. Which also means that Denmark has the longest consistent, high-quality time series in the world for a lot of things. It is no coincidence that we do excellent epidemiology, to take one example.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 04:06:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So is there a category for UNemployed part time students? (Other than SOL?) Is that what I should have specified. :-)

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 09:28:18 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The need to develop a government job guarantee programme administered through the employment offices becomes patent.

Also the extent to which current policy is one of preventing full employment.

Economics is politics by other means

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue May 24th, 2011 at 06:54:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]

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