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A wage-less recovery

Workers' wages are stagnating in the US, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

Average hourly earnings showed no growth in March for the fourth time in five months. David Rosenberg, chief economist at Gluskin Sheff, says the 1 percent growth during that period is the weakest in 25 years. Rosenberg says the U.S. is undergoing a "wage-less" recovery.

At the same time, stagnating wages cannot keep up with rising inflation, and thus workers are experiencing a cut in real living standards. In the year to March, average hourly earnings grew by 1.7 percent, while annual inflation, reports CNBC, could be as high as 2.6 percent. In the past three months this trend has been more noticeable, according to the Washington Post, as consumer prices have been rising at a 5.7 percent rate, while average weekly wages have increased by an annual rate of only 1.3 percent.

Indeed, as the Journal notes, the median (or typical) household incomes in the US - after adjusting for inflation - peaked in 1999, and have fallen since.

These are the same typical workers who, according to some accounts, partied to excess over the past decade, and have only themselves to blame for bringing on the financial meltdown and recession.

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