Silver Lining

The Consumer Price Index declined for the third straight month in December, by 0.7 percent. This translates into a strong increase in real incomes, as the Center for Economic and Policy Research points out:

Over the eight years of the Bush administration, the average real hourly wage increased by 7.1 percent, almost the exact same as the 7.3 percent increase over the eight years of the Clinton administration.

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I’m pretty sure that “real hourly wage” doesn’t include benefits, which account for an ever-growing share of employee compensation. If that assumption is correct, both of the above figures are way too low, and the figure for the Bush years is probably higher than that for the Clinton years.


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