New Jobs Pay Less Than Ones They Replaced

President Bush has been touting the jobs created since the end of the recession. But two new reports show those jobs pay significantly less than the more than 2 million mainly manufacturing jobs that were lost during the same period. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Jan. 31 that wages and benefits paid to civilian workers rose last year by the slowest rate in nine years.

Employee compensation was up 3.1 percent in 2005, less than the rate of inflation. When inflation is factored in, overall compensation fell by 0.3 percent, the first time there has been a decline since 1996. The findings backed up a new study showing the new jobs created paid on average $9,000 less per year than the more than 2 million jobs they replaced.

The report, The Role of Metro Areas in the U.S. Economy, prepared for the U.S. Conference of Mayors, said the 10 sectors of the economy that lost the most jobs by the end of 2003 paid an average of $43,629, while the 10 sectors with the largest job increases paid an average $34,378, a 21 percent difference.