Number of jobs held by baby boomers, 1978–2008
September 24, 2010
Individuals born in the latter years of the baby boom held an average of 11 jobs from age 18 to age 44, with the majority of the jobs being held before age 27. These baby boomers (who were born in the years 1957 to 1964) held an average of 4.4 jobs while they were between the ages of 18 and 22.
The average number of jobs fell to 3.2 while these persons were ages 23 to 27 and to 2.6 while they were ages 28 to 32. These individuals held an average of 2.4 jobs while they were ages 33 to 38 and 2.0 jobs while they were ages 39 to 44.
On average, men held 11.4 jobs and women held 10.7 jobs from age 18 to age 44. Men held 4.5 jobs from age 18 to age 22, compared with 2.0 jobs from age 39 to age 44. The reduction in the average number of jobs held in successive age groups was similar for women.
From age 18 to age 44, whites held more jobs than blacks or Hispanics or Latinos, although the difference is concentrated among 18- to 22-year-olds. On average, whites held 4.6 jobs between the ages of 18 and 22, while blacks held 3.5 jobs and Hispanics or Latinos held 4.0 jobs. From age 23 to age 44, there was no significant difference in the average number of jobs held by whites and the average number of jobs held by blacks or Hispanics or Latinos.
These data are from the BLS National Longitudinal Surveys. To learn more, see "Number of Jobs Held, Labor Market Activity, and Earnings Growth among the Youngest Baby Boomers: Results from a Longitudinal Survey" (HTML) (PDF), news release USDL-10-1243. Note that jobs that were held in more than one of the age categories were counted in each appropriate category, but only once in the total.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Number of jobs held by baby boomers, 1978–2008 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2010/ted_20100924.htm (visited January 23, 2019).
Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics
- Workers in Alternative Employment Arrangements
A look at independent contractors, on-call workers, temporary help agency workers, and workers provided by contract firms.
- Labor force characteristics of people with a disability
Examines the labor force characteristics of people with a disability and compares them with the characteristics of people with no disability.
- A Look at Contingent Workers
Examines people who do not expect their jobs to last or who report that their jobs are temporary.
- Race, Economics, and Social Status
Examines Consumer Expenditure Survey data to explore social and economic factors by race and ethnicity.