I read a lot of business news. I do for a lot of reasons. One of those reasons is that I need to know what the larger, economic trends are as they unfold around me. That is part of my business. One thing that I have been noticing for a long time is that what I see in my office and what I read in the National business news has never quite seemed to match up. The news talks about economic growth, increased productivity, skyrocketing executive pay and returns for shareholders. What I see is people struggling really hard to hang on to where they used to be.
Marketwatch had an article today that caught my eye. I read the article, because of the title, “Your Paycheck Has Been Shrinking for the Last Five Years.”, but it was the last sentence that really grabbed my attention.
“So wage growth has been generally weak for more than 15 years.”
Yea, or maybe even more than that. It is nice to know, sort of, that it isn’t just the little microcosm that is my office; but it is still getting old to keep watching people come in who are making the same or less than they were 5 — 10 — even 15 years ago. I’m not adjusting for inflation, here. I am talking real wages. I’d say wage growth has been slow all right.
What scares me is what this has to say about future social and economic stability.