Freeters are mainly young people who make their living from short-term, part-time jobs instead of taking fixed jobs. It is a word coined from the English word free and the German word Arbeiter (worker). According to a survey conducted by a job-hunters' magazine on 6,000 senior high school and university students resident in the Tokyo metropolitan area, 29% of high school students are "interested in being a freeter." The reasons the majority of them gave were that they could "experience many different types of work" and "have more free time than a regular employee." Other factors involved may be the attitudes of the younger generation, who value the comparative freedom that can be enjoyed if not employed at a single company, and the increasing number of young people who are unable to find a satisfying job. At the same time, businesses are reducing the number of regular employees and increasing the number of part-time or casual employees in order to cut costs.

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