Thursday, June 29, 2006

Middle-class incomes not so good

Kevin Drum writes "the U.S. economy has been growing at a pretty good clip lately but middle class incomes haven't benefited." He links to MaxSpeak on YOYO (you're on your own) economics in a discussion about a new book from senior economist, Economic Policy Institute, Jared Bernstein. A clip from MaxSpeak:

  • Over the course of the current economic expansion, real GDP is up 15%.
  • The Congress is busy killing a moderate minimum wage increase while working diligently to repeal the estate tax.
  • Profits as a share of national income are at a forty-year high. The share of income accruing to the top 1%, after falling in the wake of the bust, is again on the rise.
  • Productivity is up a stellar 15% over this recovery. Real hourly wages of non-managers are up bupkes (-0.6%).
  • New economy cheerleaders expound on the great job market, yet employment growth is up only 2% over this business cycle. The growth for the comparable period over the 1990s cycle was 7% and the historical average for cycles of this length was 10%.
  • Over five million more people are poor in 2004 (most recent data) compared to 2000, including 1.4 million kids.
Had enough?