The Real Deal With Real Wages and Productivity

It's a popular misconception that real wages have stagnated for decades. The data that backs this uses inappropriate inflation data.

News

June's employment numbers showed a cooler labor market, with gains of 206,000 and the unemployment rate slipping to 4.1%.

Industries: Discover industry-specific insights and the state of hiring in these main sectors.

We have expanded our reporting to cover Canada and the UK.

recruitonomics

Recruitonomics is a hub for data-driven research that aims to make sense of our evolving world of work.

#Julius Probst, PhD

All #Julius Probst, PhD Stories

It's a popular misconception that real wages have stagnated for decades. The data that backs this uses inappropriate inflation data.
4 minutes
Climate change is no longer a distant threat. It is already negatively impacting European economies and labor markets.
5 minutes
Workers’ health has been deteriorating and economic costs are rising due to the obesity epidemic. Weight loss drugs can help reverse these negative trends.
5 minutes
Two surveys offer the primary insights into the labor market, but recently, the job numbers they offer have been diverging.
5 minutes
High interest rates in the Europe have stifled economic growth. High German wage growth is a risk, but the ECB should continue to ease policy.
5 minutes
Income inequality in the U.K. has fallen. Wage stagnation at the top combined with large increases in the minimum wage can help explain why.
6 minutes
The United States labor market has been impressively strong for some time, but is this the best labor market ever? Not quite.
4 minutes
Spain’s decade-long depression finally seems to be over. The country is enjoying a labor market recovery and a tourism boom.
5 minutes
The U.K. has experienced a surge in immigration lately, so we gathered seven facts about the current state of immigration.
4 minutes
In the U.K., both wages and inflation came in hotter than expected. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate edged up and payroll jobs saw a steep decline, indicating a rapidly weakening labor market.
4 minutes
The French economy has been outperforming thanks to fashionable exports, favorable demographics, and an attractive investment environment.
6 minutes
Advanced economies are facing shrinking workforces. But the recent immigration surge is now throwing off some older population forecasts.
5 minutes
The U.K.’s economic downturn is currently affecting “sitting-down jobs” much more than “standing-up jobs”. The U.K. labor market is experiencing a white-collar recession.
5 minutes
The amount of sick leave in Germany can partially explain why Germany’s economy tipped into recession last year.
5 minutes
After decades of stalling wage gains for the lowest earners, the U.S. is experiencing a dramatic wage compression.
5 minutes
Couples in different advanced economies face different opportunity costs when it comes to children, creating different pockets of DINKs across the globe.
4 minutes
Raising kids has become increasingly expensive but not necessarily in the way that you think. Women increasingly choose career over babies – welcome to the DINK phenomenon.
4 minutes
GDP data confirmed that the UK slipped into recession in the second half of 2023. The BoE needs to reverse course quickly or else face a more severe downturn.
5 minutes
Pinpointing a national downturn is difficult enough, but knowing whether a state is in a recession or not is even more tricky.
5 minutes
Brexit may have created barriers to trading goods for the U.K., but it might also create an opportunity to become a service export superpower.
4 minutes
Data revisions have subtracted more than 400,000 jobs throughout 2023, something that Fed policymakers should keep an eye on.
5 minutes
OECD countries have seen a surge in migration recently. In the future, expect permanently higher migration flows due to new factors at work.
5 minutes
Overall GDP growth in the U.K. has been steady, but the increase is driven by population growth, rather than productivity and income growth.
4 minutes
The United Kingdom's economic outlook is only slightly more uncertain than its current status, which is bad news for the central bank.
5 minutes
The outlook for the Eurozone is not looking positive for 2024, especially if the European Central Bank continues on its current path.
5 minutes
Will the proposed tax cuts from the U.K. government's actually boost economic growth or is their usefulness overstated in nominal terms?
5 minutes
Though more and more people are graduating from college, the U.K. labor market has a troubling graduate skill premium.
5 minutes
Rapidly rising interest rates didn't create the big economic downturn that many forecasters predicted. How did the economy avoid a recession?
4 minutes
BoE officials have made it clear that they are now willing to sacrifice the labor market to bring down inflation, but the official numbers are unreliable.
5 minutes
A century ago, John Maynard Keynes envisioned a future world where a 15-hour work week was the norm. Was he really so far off the mark?
4 minutes
Recently Federal Reserve data reveals that Americans are wealthier than ever. Net worth, adjusted for inflation, surged during the pandemic.
4 minutes
The risks to quantitative easing are benign during anemic recoveries. In this period of high inflation, it could results in bad losses.
5 minutes
Claudia Goldin was awarded a Nobel Prize this year for her work on women's labor market outcomes through time.
5 minutes
Corporate greed has been wrongly blamed for this bout of inflation. Greedflation isn't the problem. Excess growth and labor shortages are.
5 minutes
Is this the moment of resurgence for cities and states in the Rust Belt that suffered in recent decades due to the "China Shock"?
4 minutes
The story of the United Kingdom's economy lately has been one of disaster, but recent revisions may have changed the narrative.
4 minutes
High frequency indicators allow economists to gauge economic performance in real-time and they are pointing at a German contraction.
5 minutes
The dysfunctional housing market in the United Kingdom prevents workers from moving to highly productive cities, leading to underperformance.
4 minutes
After years of stagnation following the Eurozone crisis, Southern Europe has turned the tables and is now outperforming the rest of the Eurozone.
4 minutes
Advanced economies are experiencing very tight labor markets. This worker shortage has implications for hiring. Recruiters are increasingly poaching employees rather than recruiting from a shrinking pool of unemployed, which has implications for monetary policy.
8 minutes
The U.S. labor market added a moderate 187,000 net new jobs in July and the unemployment rate ticked down to 3.5%.
4 minutes
The German economy is once again underperforming, experiencing a technical recession earlier this year. But why is the country sick again?
6 minutes
Germany was dubbed “the sick man of Europe” in the early 2000s. Labor market reforms paired with favorable macroeconomic conditions cured the economic malaise.
4 minutes
Japan's dismal demographic outlook has caused an interesting phenomenon: low unemployment paired with negative GDP growth. These "full employment recessions" are becoming more common in Europe.
4 minutes
The UK's National Health System is stretched dangerously thin, with waiting lines so long people's lives are at risk. The lack of health services is also hurting the labor market.
5 minutes
The German economy has benefited from a surge in immigration, but a skill mismatch is emerging.
5 minutes
The global manufacturing industry is being hurt by a shift in consumer preferences, especially in Europe.
5 minutes
Canada’s liberal immigration policies are a success story. The country’s population recently reached 40 million, surpassing that of California.
4 minutes
A massive inflow of Ukrainian refugees has boosted Poland’s labor supply and is contributing to its economy outperforming the rest of Europe.
5 minutes
Despite Brexit, the U.K. will remain a popular immigration destination, but the housing market will be a constraint moving forward. 
5 minutes

Sign up to receive the latest updates!