How to navigate your most dangerous decade

Losing a job is almost always traumatic. In your 50s, job loss can be devastating — and devastatingly common.

More than half the workers who entered their 50s with stable, full-time jobs were laid off or pushed out at least once by age 65, according to an analysis of employment data from 1990 to 2016 by the nonprofit newsroom ProPublica and the Urban Institute, a nonprofit think tank. Only 10% of those who lost a job ever found another that paid as much, and most never recovered financially.

Such concerns may seem remote in a booming economy, when the official unemployment rate is 3.5% overall and just 2.4% for those 55 and over. But recessions are inevitable, and even in good times older workers can be more vulnerable to involuntary job loss because of age discrimination.

In my latest for the Associated Press, the importance of having a plan to navigate what could be your most dangerous decade.

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