but teens usually find it harder to find jobs than their more experienced elders.
unemployment rate measures joblessness only among people who are actively looking for work. And many American teens aren't.
Today's teenagers have other priorities.
43 percent of 16- to 19-year-olds were either working or looking for a job. That's 10 points lower than in July 2006. In 1988 and 1989, the July labor force participation rate for teenagers nearly hit 70 percent.
Why aren't teens working? Lots of theories have been offered:
Immigrants are competing with teens for jobs; a 2012 study found that less educated immigrants affected employment for U.S
Parents are pushing kids to volunteer and sign up for extracurricular activities instead of working, to impress college admission counselors
Teen earnings are low and pay little toward the costs of college,
millions of teenagers aren't working because they're studying instead.
education has taken up more and more of teenagers' time,
In July of last year, more than two in five 16- to 19-year-olds were enrolled in school. That's four times times as many as were enrolled in 1985, BLS data show.
All this studying has obvious benefits, but a single-minded focus on education has disadvantages, too.
researchers analyzed the effects of two Chicago programs providing students with part-time job
an effect felt for at least a year after the programs ended. If teens got nothing else out of the jobs programs, the researchers suggested, they were at least "learning to better avoid or manage conflict."