Whose wages are rising and why?

Posted by Brookings Institution on February 25, 2020

Over the last 40 years, wage growth for typical American workers has been extraordinarily weak. The typical worker has certainly gained some ground—especially over the last 25 years—and different inflation adjustments can make those gains appear somewhat larger. But by any measure, wages at the middle have grown more slowly than at the top and more slowly than the economy overall. In addition, fewer Americans are earning more than their parents did at similar ages, perhaps explaining discontent with the economy despite the consistent economic growth and low unemployment rates. Many presidential candidates highlight this discontent.

Whose wages are rising and why?

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