The world would be $1.1 trillion richer if it treated its young people more like Germany does

By Eshe Nelson

October 25, 2016

Just 10% of people aged 20-24 are out of work or not in school in Germany. As befits Germany’s reputation for efficiency and industrial success, this is one of the lowest levels in the world. If all 35 OECD countries reduced youth unemployment to German levels, the economic gain would be $1.1 trillion, according to a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Switzerland ranks top in PwC’s “Young Workers Index,” which compares eight different measures of employment and education. Germany comes second. The US is number 10 on the list and the UK is 21st. Southern Europeans have fared the worst, showing the long-lasting impact that the financial crisis and European debt crisis have had on young people there. Italy came in last on the index, where 35% neither have jobs nor are in school. If Italy improved to Germany’s level, its GDP could increase by $156 billion, the report said. A separate report published last week showed that one in 10 Italians under 34 are living in poverty.

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