Challenges and Opportunities
Edited by Ronald J. Burke, Cary Cooper and Alexander-Stamatios Antoniou
Chapter 3: Surviving in difficult economic times: relationship between economic factors, self-esteem and psychological distress in university students
Since the advent of the financial crisis in 2007/08, there has been a steady decline in the economy of many countries. Between 2008 and 2009, credit became more expensive and businesses lost their ability to pay their employees. As a result, output fell, which led to layoffs, and less hiring across the globe. In addition, funding by governments was diminishing over time, thus leading them to cut needed social programs including health care, pensions, old age security, housing and jobs (Evans, 2010; Froman, 2010; Stuckler and Basu, 2013). In countries worldwide, the financial crisis and the recession that followed resulted in severe increases in unemployment, which varied in degree among countries. In May 2009, 42,000 jobs were lost in Canada, and its unemployment rate of 8.4 percent was the highest it had been in 11 years (Usalcus, 2010). In the US as well, there was an increase in unemployment by 2009, and 15.3 million people were jobless (US Department of Labor, 2010). The US unemployment rate was 10.2 percent in October 2009, reaching double digits for the first time in 26 years (Goodman, 2009). The situation was particularly dire in parts of the European Union, including Ireland, Greece and Spain. In Ireland and the United Kingdom, 6.2 million new applications for unemployment insurance were received in 2009 (Telegraph, 2010).
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