Wages Delaying Adulthood in 20-somethings

WASHINGTON, April 28 (UPI) — U.S. young adults are living at home longer and are financially insecure — essentially delaying adulthood, marriage and children, researchers said.

Richard Settersten of Oregon State University and Barbara Ray, president of Hired Pen, Inc., said a 22-year-old in 2010 might have more in common with his or her counterpart from the early 1900s, when young people waited until they were self-sufficient to set up households, marry and have children, than with baby boomers.


Many baby boomers had access to high-paying industrial jobs with good wages and benefits making adult independence, marriage and children possible at a younger age, the study authors said.

However, today, even those with an education aren’t as likely as those in the 1960s and 1970s to get a good paying job.

Men ages 25-34 with a high school degree or less earned about $4,000 less in 2002 than in 1975 — earnings adjusted for inflation — while men with some college earned about $3,500 a year less in 2002 than in 1975, the study said.

The study also said that in 1969, about 10 percent of men in their early 30s had wages below poverty level but in 2004 some 20 percent had wages below poverty level.

The findings are published in the journal Transition to Adulthood, a publication from The Future of Children, a project of Princeton University and the Brookings Institution.

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Categorized | Education, Other
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