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One of the hurdles blocking the extension of unemployment insurance benefits for about 2 million long-term unemployed workers has been eliminated.
Man Seeking Employment
When it comes to unemployment, older Americans face a double whammy.
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The dog days of August brought a slowdown in summer hiring. Employers created a tepid 169,000 jobs last month, less than what economists expected, and the  unemployment rate for older workers inched up to 5.1 percent, the government reported Friday.
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Businesses did more hiring in July and that boded well for older workers. Some 162,000 jobs were created last month and the unemployment rate for people 55-plus dropped from 5.3 percent to 5 percent.
Deborah lost her job at 62. She found resources to help her get back on track.
Deborah Salim, 62, had been living a quiet life in her mother's home town of Conway, S.C., happy with her 15-year job in the record keeping office of the local community college and with the fact that four of her five children and their children were close by.
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Older job seekers may feel like they're scaling Mount Everest in pursuit of work. Employers added 157,000 jobs to their payrolls in January but the unemployment rate for older workers climbed just one-tenth of 1 percent to 6 percent, the government reported Friday.
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"I'd do anything to get a job" - or "I'd give anything to land a job."
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In May, the Urban Institute reported that the number of eligible Americans taking early Social Security benefits had hit a 35-year low. But the recession and protracted high unemployment have left some older adults"”such as 62-year-old Clare Keany"”forced to take benefits earlier than planned.
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A new Government Accountability Office report says 55 percent of jobless older adults"”or 1.1 million Americans 55 and older"”have been unemployed for more than six months, up from 23 percent just four years ago. The report was addressed to the Senate Special Committee on Aging, which begins a hearing on older adults and unemployment issues today. Led by Sen. Herb Kohl, the Committee will investigate age discrimination in the workforce and ways to boost older workers' job prospects.
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April was another disappointing month for older workers: the unemployment rate for people 55-plus rose one-tenth of 1 percent to 6.3 percent, the government reported Friday.
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