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Jon Talton

Analysis and commentary on economic news, trends and issues, with an emphasis on Seattle and the Northwest.

March 25, 2013 at 11:25 AM

Real wages fell in 2012

The latest Economic Report to the President offers some interesting stuff in the appendix.  The most important news — and hat tip to the Middle Class Political Economist blog by Professor Kenneth Thomas for being the first to point it out — is that wages fell 0.2 percent last year adjusted for inflation. Not only that, but 2012 became a dismal anniversary: The 40th straight year that real wages fell compared with their 1972 peak.

Thomas was interested that nobody in the media seemed to pick up on this, and shame on us. For all the talk about the plight of the middle class in the presidential campaign, I don’t see any policies advancing through the Congress to address the situation.

Forty years is a long time and the lowest point of weekly earnings was 1992, when they were 22 percent below the 1972 peak. Last year, they were about 14 percent below peak. During the same time, productivity has doubled. So do the math, as they say, and tell me we don’t have a problem.

And Don’t Miss: Will Cyprus be contained? | Naked Capitalism

Today’s Econ Haiku:

Market up, Cyprus

Oracle on an island

Market down, Cyprus

0 Comments | More in Income/living standards, Jobs/Unemployment, Working America

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