Census Bureau data shows that median earnings for full-time, year-round workers dropped from by nearly 3 percent for men and 1 percent for women between 2009 and 2014. While new data from the Labor Department shows that wage gains have accelerated over the past two years, that trend is only beginning to make up for an extended period of income stagnation for many workers. Economists generally point to an overall lack of hiring demand, and reduced bargaining power among workers, as explanations for these wage trends.
These national-level statistics, however, tend to obscure significant earnings discrepancies by race and by place over the past few years. A closer look at data from Brookings’ Metro Monitor, including analysis of occupational trends by race, offers some clues as to why black workers in particular may have suffered more widespread wage losses than their white and Latino counterparts over the first five years of the economic recovery.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Job shifts may help explain why earnings are declining for black Americans | Brookings Institution