Wagemark Resources and News

Not all jobs created equal

The good news first: It appears that, in 2014, the U.S. economy has at long last recovered all of the jobs lost during the economic downturn that began six years ago. Now, the bad news: these new jobs pay less. A lot less.

According to a report released by the United States Conference of Mayors, and parsed by the Los Angeles Times, these replacement jobs are mostly within lower-paid sectors. As a result, the ensuing pay cut is averaged at 23 percent. The unsurprising cherry on top of the disappointment sundae? The top 20 percent of earners continue to be accumulating wealth just fine.

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The income gap between rich and poor U.S. metropolises has reached a new peak. The Financial Times reports from new US Commerce and Labor Department data for the 100 largest metropolitan areas by population that shaky job recovery (see above) has made for a sharp imbalance between the country’s housing markets.

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Finally, this week’s conversation necessarily turns to Ferguson, Missouri. Following the killing of an unarmed 18-year-old black man, Michael Brown, by police officer Darren Wilson, and days of ensuing protests met with militarized policing tactics, the New York Times editorial board has released a contextualizing summary of the overlapping layers of racial segregation and economic disparity that incubated this week’s tragic events.

Commentary from Colorlines that picks up on the Standard & Poors report we discussed last week, as well as Monday’s report from the U.S. Conference of Mayors, elaborates on one facet of this deeply entrenched inequality rat king: that black and Latino wage earners are faring poorest in the unevenly recovering job market. When considering this week, it is impossible to disentangle one ingredient from the other.

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