Newly released federal data shows that inflation has outpaced wages for nearly two years. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics tracks “real” average hourly earnings, which takes into account the rising inflation.
According to BLS, “From February 2022 to February 2023, real average hourly earnings decreased 0.3 percent, seasonally adjusted. The change in real average hourly earnings combined with a decrease of 0.9 percent in the average workweek resulted in a 1.2-percent decrease in real average weekly earnings over this period.”
The picture is even worse for some goods, like groceries and energy. While workers have seen sizeable pay raises, inflation has risen faster. Last year, hourly wages increased about 5%, but inflation rose 7%. Critics blame the Biden administration’s trillions of dollars in federal spending and the money-printing that supports it.
Experts say this year could be another of high inflation and overall falling wages. Supply chain issues and the Russian invasion of Ukraine have also increased the cost of certain goods. Biden’s latest budget proposed trillions in federal spending.
Biden has touted the rising wages and deficit cuts, but inflation is still rising faster than wages, and the national debt is expected to surpass $50 trillion within a decade.