Here’s a Better Look at Blue-Collar Wage Growth

Earlier today I noted that weekly blue-collar wages had increased a lot in August. Unfortunately, this is a series I don’t look at routinely, and I made a mistake I’ve criticized in others: looking at annualized monthly growth, which is often very noisy:

On an annualized basis, blue-collar wages in August did indeed grow 7.7 percent from July. But that’s hardly unusual, and there are plenty of months where wages have declined by that much. It’s better to look at year-over-year growth:

Adjusted for inflation, blue-collar wages were up 1 percent in August compared to last year. That’s decent growth, but nothing astronomical.

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