Floating Overpopulation

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Floating Overpopulation

 

a form of relative overpopulation (seeINDUSTRIAL RESERVE ARMY); the army of unemployed produced by the cyclical character of the development of capitalist production, by the reduction of capitalist production during slumps and crises, and by such factors as capitalist rationalization and increased intensification of labor by industrial and nonindus-trial workers. This form of unemployment is common in cities and industrial centers, where a significant part of the industrial and nonindustrial workers periodically lose their jobs.

Floating overpopulation is the only form of unemployment counted in the economically developed countries. It has an adverse effect on the condition of the entire working class: the unemployed must be supported directly or indirectly by the rest of the working class. Floating overpopulation leads to the workers’ loss of their former professions and skills, to the need for retraining, and to a reduction in real wages.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.