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DW: Generation Z is more resilient to inflation

Young people between the ages of 18 and 25 experience record increases in basic necessities differently from older ones and in many ways cope better.

“I always thought that at this age I would have bought a small used car to visit my grandmother more often in Bavaria – obviously this will not happen soon.” earns 600 euros a month.Supplements her income by working in a cafeteria.

The car she can not buy and the visits to her grandmother are not the biggest sacrifice she makes as the prices of basic goods increase at record rates. “My income is not enough to buy the food I want, such as healthy, organic products from local producers. At these prices, someone like me has to settle for the cheapest products he can find in the supermarket.”

Not everyone is affected the same

Young people of Alia’s age are facing for the first time such a dramatic increase in the cost of living, as a result of congestion in the supply chain due to the pandemic, but also the war in Ukraine.

According to research, such as that of the World Bank, not everyone is affected in the same way: high inflation primarily affects low-income households, and in some cases benefits property owners. Whether one is affected “depends on factors such as lifestyle, consumer habits and financial status,” explains Enzo Weber of the German Labor Market Research Institute (IAB).

Age is also a factor. In general, young people in this age group are more flexible, making it easier for them to adjust to financial hardship. “Most people between the ages of 30-50 can not cut back on their expenses like young people,” says Weber. higher-paying jobs. ”

The trump card for young people is the lack of manpower

Another advantage for Generation Z is the lack of manpower observed in recent months. As businesses reopen after the pandemic was lifted, they are offering higher wages than ever before to attract employees.

Thus, those entering the job market now can to some extent choose the position that pays best, as opposed to someone who has been in a particular company or industry for decades and does not have the same flexibility.

Threats and opportunities

Although Generation Z is partially eligible to better manage the current crisis, the reality is a bit more complex: in the US and EU, there are doubts as to whether wage increases are enough to offset the rapid rise in prices. According to official German data, despite the increase in the basic wage, real wages or their purchasing power has fallen, while a similar trend is observed in the United States.

Older Generations Z must first make up for the losses of the pandemic, which prevented them from entering the labor market early. According to a 2017 survey, one month of unemployment at the age of 18-20 leads to a permanent, lifelong reduction in income of 2%.

Weber remains optimistic. “We live in a time of fundamental change: technologies, jobs and job demands are changing, both threatening and challenging.” His advice to young people? the more vulnerable it is to the worst damage a disaster can do. ”

Monir Gaedi Edited by: Katerina Alexandridi

Source: Deutsche Welle

Source: Capital

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