Sunday, July 18, 2004

So, what's wrong with a little class warfare, part 2 

The lead story (amazingly enough) in today's New York Times:

The amount of money workers receive in their paychecks is failing to keep up with inflation. Though wages should recover if businesses continue to hire, three years of job losses have left a large worker surplus.

"There's too much slack in the labor market to generate any pressure on wage growth,'' said Jared Bernstein, an economist at the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal research institution based in Washington. "We are going to need a much lower unemployment rate.'' He noted that at 5.6 percent, the national unemployment rate is still back at the same level as at the end of the recession in November 2001.

Even though the economy has been adding hundreds of thousands of jobs almost every month this year, stagnant wages could put a dent in the prospects for economic growth, some economists say. If incomes continue to lag behind the increase in prices, it may hinder the ability of ordinary workers to spend money at a healthy clip, undermining one of the pillars of the expansion so far.
(via NY Times)

It's funny how the news is always how "the economy" is recovering. But the economy is not my personal economy—or yours.

Are you better off than you were four years ago? I'm not. Corporate profits are booming, but I'm falling behind. Why is that?

UPDATE And, whaddaya know, Edwards took advantage of this right away:

Turning to the economy, Edwards referred to a story in Sunday editions of The New York Times that said hourly wages are not keeping pace with inflation. "Is that a news bulletin to you?" Edwards asked the congregants.

"No!" many responded in unison.

"I am here to tell you hope is on the way," Edwards said.
(via CNN)


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