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Why Is Veteran Unemployment So High?

Why Is Veteran Unemployment So High?

David S. Loughran
Copyright Date: 2014
Published by: RAND Corporation
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  • Book Info
    Why Is Veteran Unemployment So High?
    Book Description:

    Between 2000 and 2011, younger veterans were more likely to be unemployed than younger non-veterans. This difference falls rapidly with age and time. The evidence supports the hypothesis that veteran unemployment reflects engagement in job search. There is little evidence that veterans are disadvantaged in the labor market. Limiting benefits to veterans might reduce the length of unemployment spells, but the budgetary effect is unclear.

    eISBN: 978-0-8330-8534-4
    Subjects: History, Law, Business

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Preface
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  4. Figures and Tables
    (pp. vii-viii)
  5. Summary
    (pp. ix-x)
  6. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xi-xii)
  7. Abbreviations
    (pp. xiii-xiv)
  8. CHAPTER ONE Introduction
    (pp. 1-4)

    The Great Recession, which took place from December 2007 to June 2009, precipitated one of the greatest sustained increases in unemployment in U.S. history. According to official statistics published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate exceeded 8 percent between February 2009 and August 2012 (see Figure 1.1). As of December 2012, the U.S. Federal Reserve projected the unemployment rate would remain above 7 percent through 2013 (U.S. Federal Reserve, 2012).

    The public has long been concerned about the transition of military service members into the civilian labor market following a period of active-duty military...

  9. CHAPTER TWO The Facts About Veteran Unemployment
    (pp. 5-16)

    This chapter employs CPS and ACS data to establish five facts about veteran unemployment:

    The unemployment rate of veterans ages 18–65 is higher than the unemployment rate of similarly situated non-veterans.

    In the CPS, the difference between veteran and non-veteran youth (ages 18–24) unemployment increased substantially between 2008 and 2011, but then declined between 2011 and 2012; this post-2008 trend is not apparent in the ACS.

    Labor force participation of veterans declined relative to that of non-veterans in the CPS between 2000 and 2012; this trend is not apparent in the ACS.

    The difference between veteran non-veteran unemployment...

  10. CHAPTER THREE Five Hypotheses for High Veteran Unemployment
    (pp. 17-24)

    This chapter begins with a description of five commonly cited hypotheses for why veteran unemployment is high relative to non-veteran unemployment. The chapter then discusses why existing research findings are most consistent with what could be called the “job search” hypothesis. The five hypotheses are:

    Poor health. Military service causes poor physical and mental health and poor health causes unemployment.

    Selection. Individuals who choose to apply for military service have characteristics that make it more likely they will be unemployed in the future than do individuals who do not choose to apply for military service.

    Employer discrimination. Civilian employers discriminate...

  11. CHAPTER FOUR Can Veteran Job Search Be Shortened?
    (pp. 25-28)

    The available evidence presented in the previous chapters is most consistent with the hypothesis that veterans are more likely to be unemployed than non-veterans because they are more likely to have recently separated from a job—namely, military service—and, therefore, are more likely to be in the process of finding a new job. The difference between veteran and nonveteran unemployment is substantially less among older veterans and slightly less among veterans separated from the military for more than one year. Longitudinal analyses show further that unemployment of veterans and non-veterans converges with months in sample in the CPS and...

  12. Bibliography
    (pp. 29-30)