For those with the good fortune to have a job, wage growth has actually increased in recent months, government surveys show. From the fall of Lehman Brothers last September to this June, average weekly pay stayed at $612. But since June, the workweek has gotten longer and hourly pay growth has increased. Average weekly pay hit $618 last month, writes David Leonhardt in the New York Times.
“Even though unemployment has reached its highest level in 26 years, most workers have received a raise over the last year,” Leonhardt notes. In fact, “in the job market, at least, the recession’s pain has been unusually concentrated." There's less churn than usual; those who are unemployed stay that way longer, but few are still being laid off, and most companies "have evidently decided that pay cuts aren’t worth the downside."