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The return of the older worker

The activity (or participation) rate measures the share of working-age people who are in the labour force, including both those in employment and unemployment. There has been a constant growth in activity rates among developed countries during the last decades.

The EU used to trail the US and some other developed economies in terms of activity rates, and in 2006, there was a gap of around 5 percentage points between the US and the EU. However, this gap has disappeared by the third quarter of 2015, due to falling activity rates in the

US and an increase by 3 percentage points in the EU.

The rise in the activity rate in the EU occurred in spite of the crisis which led to considerable job losses and a big increase in unemployment. It was the result of older workers staying in the labour force: the activity rate of older workers, those above 55 years old increased by almost 10 percentage points since 2008. The higher participation of older workers compensated the decrease of around 3 percentage points among young people (15-24 years) and the stagnation of the activity rate of the prime working-age population (25-54 years).



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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 693319
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Home News The return of the older worker