The growth of employee compensation, already thought to be the slowest in any post-World War II recovery, has been even weaker than previously assumed, the Commerce Department said Friday.
Wages grew at a 1.8% real annual pace, revised from 2.2% earlier. With the workforce growing about 1.3% per year, real wages per worker were up about 0.5% per year, about half the previous estimate.
In the political sphere, Democrats have argued that the booming economy of the past four years has not benefited everyone equally. The incomes of the vast majority who labor to earn their livelihoods have been stagnant while those who let their money work for them have prospered.
Republicans have countered that the strong economy has been creating enough jobs to drive the unemployment rate down to 4.6%. Lower taxes have increased take-home pay, they say, and barriers to entrepreneurship and risk-taking have been reduced.
The new figures bolster the Democrats' side. Wages were stagnant, but income from assets rose even faster than previously believed.
While income from labor was revised lower by a total of $115.8 billion over the three years, income from owning capital was revised higher by a total of $139.9 billion.
Sunday, July 30, 2006
While The Poor People Sleepin'...
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