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A Decade of Flat Wages: The Key Barrier to Shared Prosperity and a Rising Middle Class. The nation’s economic discourse has finally shifted from talk of “grand bargain” budget deals to a focus on addressing the economic challenges of the middle class and those aspiring to join the middle class.

A Decade of Flat Wages: The Key Barrier to Shared Prosperity and a Rising Middle Class

Growing the economy from the “middle out” has become the new frame for discussing economic policy. This is long overdue; in our view, an economy that does not provide shared prosperity is, by definition, a poorly performing one. Further, such an economy will not provide sustainable growth without relying on consumption fueled by asset bubbles and escalating household debt.

Abraham Lincoln on Freedom, Wage labour and Slavery. The liberal tradition is employed by the left and the right to justify their positions concerning contemporary “capitalist” society.

Abraham Lincoln on Freedom, Wage labour and Slavery

An issue often raised concerns US slavery, whether it made life better for slaves, whether it was better or worse than wage slavery in the north. While we’ve all heard Noam Chomsky talk about this, it’s probably a good idea to look for other sources on what 19th century liberals actually thought about freedom. Lowwagework.pdf (application/pdf Object) The 20 Million. Ocwage.pdf (application/pdf Object) Minimum Wage in U.S. Fails to Beat Inflation: Chart of the Day. Workers in the U.S. earning the minimum wage are worse off now than they were four decades ago.

Minimum Wage in U.S. Fails to Beat Inflation: Chart of the Day

The CHART OF THE DAY shows that after adjusting for inflation, the federal minimum wage dropped 20 percent from 1967 to 2010, even as the nominal figure climbed to $7.25 an hour from $1.40, a 418 percent gain. How High Could the Minimum Wage Go? (Photo: Wisconsin Jobs Now / Flickr)A 70 percent boost - to $12.30/hour - would help millions of workers, without killing jobs.

How High Could the Minimum Wage Go?

The minimum wage needs a jolt—not just the usual fine-tuning—if it’s ever going to serve as a living wage. Annual full-time earnings at today’s $7.25 federal minimum wage are about $15,000 per year. This doesn’t come anywhere near providing a decent living standard by any reasonable definition, for any household, least of all households with children. But among the seventeen states that either have active campaigns to raise their minimum wage or have raised them already this year, none have suggested raising the wage floor by more than 20%. 40% of Americans Now Make Less Than 1968 Minimum Wage. The Minimum Wage Is Stuck at $7.25; It Should Be $21.16. America’s minimum wage was raised to $7.25 per hour on July 24, 2009.

The Minimum Wage Is Stuck at $7.25; It Should Be $21.16

Increasing Productivity and Stagnant Wages. The Wages of Global Capitalism. Capitalism no longer delivers a rising standard of living in the regions where it began and developed first: Western Europe, North America and Japan, says Richard Wolff.

The Wages of Global Capitalism

(Image via Shutterstock)Wage growth in the world slowed to an average of 2 percent in 2013. That was less than in 2012 and far less than the pre-crisis rate of 3 percent. Starker still were the differences between wage growth in the "developed world" (chiefly Western Europe, North America and Japan) and wage growth in the major "emerging growth" countries, chiefly China. In the "developed world" wage growth in 2012 was 0.1 percent, and in 2013 it was 0.2 percent.

Far from portending any economic "recovery," that level of wage "growth" is rather called "wage stagnation. " These remarkable statistics come from the Global Wage Report 2014/15 released on December 5, 2014, by its author, the International Labor Organization (ILO). How are wages and productivity related? Motivated by an article in yesterday's NY Times, a reader asks me to clarify the linkage between real wages and productivity as a matter of economic theory.

How are wages and productivity related?

Here is the basic logic taught in economics textbooks: Economic theory says that the wage a worker earns, measured in units of output, equals the amount of output the worker can produce. $10 million a year: the average salary of an American CEO. In Chief Executives’ Pay, a Rich Game of Thrones. Citigroup's Chief Rebuffed on Pay by Shareholders. Lm Otero/Associated PressThe shareholder vote comes amid a debate over income inequality and hints that anger over executive pay is spreading.

Citigroup's Chief Rebuffed on Pay by Shareholders

In a stinging rebuke, Citigroup shareholders rebuffed on Tuesday the bank’s $15 million pay package for its chief executive, Vikram S. Pandit, marking the first time that stock owners have united in opposition to outsized compensation at a financial giant. The shareholder vote, which comes amid a rising national debate over income inequality, suggests that anger over pay for chief executives has spread from Occupy Wall Street to wealthy institutional investors like pension fund and mutual fund managers.

About 55 percent of the shareholders voting were against the plan, which laid out compensation for the bank’s five top executives, including Mr. Employees, Too, Want a Say on the Boss’s Pay. C.E.O.’s and the Pay-’Em-or-Lose ’Em Myth — Fair Game. “There is no conclusive empirical evidence that outside succession leads to more favorable corporate performance, or even that good performance at one company can accurately predict success at another,” the authors conclude.

C.E.O.’s and the Pay-’Em-or-Lose ’Em Myth — Fair Game

“In short, executive skills cannot pass the most basic test of generality: transferability.” TO be sure, this flies in the face of the widely held view that skilled managers have become generalists and are therefore far more interchangeable than in previous years. Proponents of this thesis argue that top managers today can accumulate a broad knowledge of economics, finance and management science, giving them the ability to manage any type of company effectively. Executive-Superstars-Peer-Benchmarking-Study.pdf (application/pdf Object)