The New York Times explores this question, stating simply: “The longer people stay out of work, the more trouble they have finding new work.”

This is troubling news considering most recent Labor Department data shows that unemployment rose from 9.6 percent to 9.8 percent in November.

One New Yorker, who has been unemployed since 2008, tells the Times, “I am so worried somebody will look at me and say, ‘Oh, he’s probably lost his edge.’ I mean, I know it’s not true, but I’m afraid I might say the same thing if I were interviewing someone I didn’t know very well who’s been out of work this long.'”

The Labor Department also reports that people out of a job for less than five weeks are three times more likely to find a job than people unemployed for more than a year.

Still, Jay Goltz, a serial entrepreneur, says there’s hope for people with a time lapse on their resumes. “Generally speaking, when the economy’s good and someone’s been out of work for a year, you might look at them funny,” he tells the Times.

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