As with adult unemployment, the level of unemployment of 16–24-year-olds peaked in the UK during 2011, when it reached over one million (a rate of 22%) and continued to fall as the economy started to grow. By the end of 2014 youth unemployment fell to around 840,000 – at a rate of 18%. The downward trend continued and by September 2017 it was down to just 10.3%. However, 16–24-year-olds remain the highest group at risk of unemployment, with 35–49-year-olds being the least at risk, with a rate of just 2.8% in the year to October 2017.
Despite the downward trend, observers in the UK and around the world – from the UK’s National Institute of Economic and Social Research to the World Economic Forum – agree that youth unemployment represents one of the most serious economic and social problems facing developed and developing economies alike.
According to the ILO, in 2013, as least 73 million 16- to 24-year-olds were unemployed
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