2012-07-03ft.com

Bob was lucky: he got a job quickly and has been employed ever since. But John was unemployed for two years before finding a job.

It is not surprising that Bob is paid more than John now. But past evidence suggests that even if both remain continuously employed to the early 2020s, John will still bear scars from his late start. Assuming they lived in the UK, John is likely to be paid 16 per cent less than Bob when they are in their early 30s.

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... many worry that the resulting policies are not enough to prevent a lost generation, given the scale of the crisis. And a slowing global economy could only add to the headwinds.

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In the long term, those who suffer lengthy spells of unemployment are likely still to feel the effects decades later. In the US, where private payment for university education is most ingrained, the burden of student debt hangs around those with less than stellar careers -- and also threatens to undermine financial stability in future if graduates cannot pay.


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