Participation Rate highest in June Since 2009

Published July 18, 2022

In June, employers added 884,000 jobs for teens aged 16 to 19, a 41% increase from the number of job gains for teens in June 2021, when 625,000 jobs were added, according to an analysis of non-seasonally adjusted data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) by global outplacement and executive coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

So far this summer, employers have created 1,037,000 teen jobs, a 23% increase over last May and June, when 844,000 teen jobs were created.

Meanwhile, the participation rate for teens is 42.9% in June, the highest participation rate in June since 2009, when 45.6% of teens worked. Last month, the BLS recorded 6,356,000 working teens, the highest number in June since 2007, when 6,725,000 teens were employed.

Teens are back to work

“Teens are ready and willing to work again, and the opportunities are plentiful. Nearly as many teens are working in June as they were last July, which was the highest month for teen employment since the summer before the pandemic,” said Andrew Challenger, Senior Vice President of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Indeed, in July 2021, 6,403,000 teens were working, the highest month for teen employment since July 2019, when 6,407,000 teens worked, according to the BLS.

Where is hiring occurring?

Employment in Leisure/Hospitality grew by 557,000 jobs in June, particularly at accommodations and eating and drinking establishments, according to non-seasonally adjusted figures from the BLS. Meanwhile, Retail employment grew by a non-seasonally adjusted 137,000 jobs, mainly at grocery and building supply stores. All of these employers are prime spots for teen workers, according to Challenger.

Will strong teen hiring continue?

“As inflationary concerns continue, these sectors may see a decline in demand, particularly if households start cutting back on entertainment with soaring food and energy costs,” said Challenger.

“However, right now, and possibly through the summer, people are willing to spend in places teens typically find employment. We may see strong hiring in July, as well,” he added.

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