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Shuli Ren

Gen-Z Is Modern China’s Unluckiest Generation

Graduates entering the worst job market in decades are waiting for their golden age

A new part of China’s university experience.

A new part of China’s university experience.

Photographer: Future Publishing/Future Publishing

The moment you enter the workforce can affect the rest of your life. Imagine graduating from school into a prolonged recession. More than a decade on from the 2008 financial crisis, millennials in the U.S. still worry that they are behind on key financial milestones, such as home ownership and retirement savings.

This generational disappointment is playing out in China too. Those born between 1997 and 2012 — Gen Z — are confronting fears that life’s best opportunities have passed them by.