Jobs

The Tuesday Podcast: Grandmother vs. Grandson, Steel-Cage Match

Max and Alice
Courtesy of Eve Marion

That's Max Marion-Spencer in the photo up there. He's 18 and unemployed — despite having applied for jobs at Quizno's, McDonald's, Arby's, Food Lion and Dollar General.

He's standing next to his grandmother, Alice Terry. She's 62, and works as a high school teacher.

On today's Planet Money, Max and Alice join us to interview for a fake job.

Fake-job title: Human manifestation of an economic trend.

The trend: In the U.S. workforce, teenagers are now outnumbered by people who are 65 or older.

(Yeah, we know Alice isn't 65 or older. And we know that, if Max is still looking for a job, he's counted as part of the workforce. Still, they're a very charming duo.)

Also on the show, we talk to a few economists about this whole situation.

Till Marco von Wachter, an economist at Columbia, tells us about a rather ominous finding from his research: People who start working during a recession are likely to see their incomes suffer for many years — even after the recession ends.

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