The economic outlook for recent graduates is not great. Canada's youth unemployment rate hit a historic high in May. If the trend continues throughout the year, young people could end up losing quite a bit of money. 

According to a July study by Statistics Canada, unemployment among people from ages 15 to 24 increased by over 19% from February to May, when the number reached 29.4%.

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If this trend continues throughout the rest of 2020, and results in a historically high 28% annual youth unemployment rate, then high school, college, and university graduates could expect to lose anywhere from $23,000 to $44,000 over the next five years.

That's an annual loss of $4,600 to $8,800.

Female graduates are more likely to lose a greater portion of their income, according to the study. 

If the youth unemployment rate does reach 28%, they could stand to lose $43,674 over five years, compared to $27,887 among male grads.

The report notes, however, that the historical high for youth unemployment was 19.2% in 1983, and losses would be more moderate if this year's rate is closer to that.

Graduates would only be losing $1,600 to $3,000 per year if it hits 19%.

If there is a significant recovery this year, and youth unemployment hits a high of 16%, then graduates across the board will only be looking at a roughly $1,200 yearly loss, regardless of education level.

Students who have been unable to find work over the summer have been receiving assistance from the government in a number of ways.

The CESB, like the CERB provided unemployed students with monthly benefit payments. They received $1250 a month, while students with disabilities and dependents received $1750.

The Canada summer job program also offered opportunities to young people who could find jobs in fields that required more workers due to the current pandemic.