As the New York Times' Economix blog reported Monday, despite signs of an improving economy, "the bundled-household phenomenon remains large." That is, a large number of adult children have moved back into their parents' house, unable to support independent households. The Times revealed new data from Moody's Analytics:
There are about 17.2 million adult children living in their parents’ homes this year, compared with around 15.3 million in 2007, the year the recession began ... And the numbers show that the greatest increases are accounted for by unemployed adult children who have moved in with parents. In 2007, 1.3 million unemployed adult children were living in their parents’ homes. This year, the total is about 2.5 million.
In a previous blog post, the Times' Catherine Rampell noted that, albeit gradually, adult children are again moving back out of the family home with increasing employment opportunities. "Household growth is still volatile, but it has been trending upward. The pickup is probably related to job growth, which has enabled multigenerational households to spin off into multiple new homes," noted Rampell. The rate of household formation in the U.S. has doubled from its average level during the downturn, and now is hovering close to pre-recession levels, according to Census data.
Meanwhile, the employment situation for recent graduates remains grim -- the unemployment rate for 20- to 24-year-olds was 13.2 percent in October (double the unemployment rate for workers aged 25 and older), according to the Labor Department.