年轻人失业幻象

巴黎—全世界经济学家需要更好地手段来度量经济活动。经济学家用GDP增长率评估经济健康程度,结果几乎无人看见2008年金融危机的警示信号——包括8万亿美元的美国房地产泡沫和西班牙、爱尔兰以及英国的不动产泡沫。经济学家与家庭、金融机构、投资者和政府一起,都陷入了最终导致过度风险承担和银行和家庭严重的过度负债的金融幻象。

失业数字的误导作用也令人吃惊——这是个严重问题,因为它和GDP指标一起制造了大量经济政策争论。极高的年轻人失业率——在西班牙和希腊据信接近50%,在整个欧元区超过20%——每天都能登上报纸标题。但这些数字使用有缺陷的方法获得的,导致情况看上去比实际严重得多。

问题出在如何衡量失业:成年人失业率的算法是用没工作的个人数量除以劳动力总数。因此,如果劳动力总数为200,其中20人没有工作,那么失业率是10%。

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