Millennials hit 30: It’s the economy, not us

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from NBCNews,

Turning 30 used to mean hitting your stride as an official adult. But for many of the country’s millennials, it feels like being stuck in perpetual late adolescence.

Marriage eludes many. Children? Not anytime soon. Most millennials have some sort of job, but for many a career seems unobtainable. A home of their own? Lots of them have had to move back in with mom and dad or shack up with roommates. That’s not the place where many millennials expected or wanted to be as they hit their third decade.

Of course, some millennials have managed to navigate the early years of adulthood just fine. But for many, 30 is looking a lot like 20 used to as the generation that began with so much promise has fallen behind on nearly every adult milestone.

What happened? One major culprit, say many millennials: The lousy economy.

Milllennials including Trowell say they aspire to the same things their parents’ generation had — and bristle when older Americans say they are lazy, or lack drive and ambition.

“It’s kind of a disillusionment that we’re facing,” Trowell said. “We were told that you can be anything you want, and now here we are and you can’t find a job.”

Millennials are loosely defined as the generation of adults born in the 1980s; the older ones of the bunch are hitting their 30s now. Experts say they’ve been hit particularly hard by the difficult economy because they have launched their careers at a time when job prospects are so dim.

The unemployment rate for younger workers has generally been higher than for older workers throughout the recession and recovery, and those who are working have likely started off lower on the ladder, and making less money, than they might have in a better economy.

Although they have decades to catch up, economists say a slow start in the working world can have a lifelong impact on a person’s earnings potential.

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