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Nearly half of US adults have layoff anxiety: Survey

August 16, 2019

Nearly half of Americans, 48%, experience anxiety over possible layoffs, according to survey results released today by CareerArc, a social recruiting and on-demand outplacement platform.

Of those who experienced anxiety, 34% cited fears over a possible recession, 32% cited rumors around the office and 30% say a recent round of workplace layoffs is the cause.

Job loss is not uncommon, according to CareerArc's poll. It found 40% have been terminated or laid off at least once.

Other findings in the survey:

  • 61% of those ages 18-34 suffer from layoff anxiety as compared to 41% of those ages 35 and above.
  • 54% percent of women surveyed don’t feel prepared for a layoff as compared to 41% of men.
  • 39% of employed women who suffer from layoff anxiety cite fear of pending recession as the No. 1 cause of their layoff anxiety versus 29% of men in the same group.
  • Men are more likely than women to have ever been laid off or terminated, with 45% of men having lost a job as compared to 36% of women.
  • 64% of Americans with college degrees or higher have never been laid off as compared to 48% of Americans with some college and 47% of those with a high school degree or less.
  • Younger, less experienced workers may face more challenges finding or switching jobs during a recession. Gen Z and millennial employees — 23% of those aged 18-34 and 19% of those aged 35-44 — were about twice as likely to experience difficulty in finding/switching jobs during the Great Recession than those ages 45-54 (11%) and 55-64 (9%).

The survey included responses from 2,024 adults ages 18 and older in the US, of which 1,062 were employed.

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