Gen Z-ers have a much harder time getting rich than their predecessors

March 23, 2024 | 03:00 pm PT
I see many people born in the 70s and 80s have high earnings despite not going to colleges while Gen Z-ers struggle to find a job with a bachelor’s degree.

My cousins who were born in the 70s and 80s all have families, grown-up children, comfortable homes, and high stable incomes. Most of them are very well-off because they have their own shops or businesses. None of them have a university degree, with their highest education level being completion of high school.

It is very difficult for the younger generation to become wealthy. Illustration photo by Pexels

It is very difficult for the younger generation to become wealthy. Illustration photo by Pexels

Meanwhile, most of the younger members of the family, born in the 90s and 2000s, are still struggling with regular jobs. Many of them are hesitant to get married, let alone buy a house. Yet the majority of them have university or college degrees.

So what is the reason for such huge differences?

In my view, the rapid development in the past few decades brought many opportunities but also risks and competition.

For example, my older cousin, who was born in the late 70s, started his business in the early 2000s when his whole commune was mainly engaged in farming and trading. He was the only one brave enough to start a vegetable farm. Being a pioneer, he succeeded and now owns four trucks that he uses to transport goods to his customers every day.

On the other hand, I have a younger cousin born in 2000 who is still struggling to find a job. He is currently taking freelance gigs and seasonal jobs to make ends meet because he has not found a stable job.

He and his peers have been significantly impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic. During their third and fourth years of university, the whole country was in lockdown and they were forced to shift to online learning. Then they had to face many pandemic-related challenges to find internships.

They then graduated in a declining economy that would take years to recover.

Moreover, their bosses and employers, who are mostly from the older generations, demand absolute dedication and years of experience from their generation. I find this exceptionally unfair.

Furthermore, the era of consumerism is also eroding the purchasing power of Gen Z-ers.

Even the new self-made billionaires are not earning as much as those who inherited their wealth. A survey showed that last year, new self-made billionaires had a combined net worth of US$141 billion while new billionaires who inherited wealth from their parents had a combined wealth of $151 billion.

It is clear that there are some inherent restrictions that make it very difficult for the younger generation to become wealthy.

Therefore, I believe that instead of criticizing Gen Z-ers, the older generations should help them out.

Do you think Gen Z-ers have it easier or harder than the previous generations?

Reader Quang Minh

*This opinion was translated into English by AI. Readers’ views are personal and do not necessarily match VnExpress’ viewpoints.

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