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National jobs and wages

Measuring family well-being
An October 21 Briefing Paper from EPI, Less Cash in Their Pockets: Trends in Income, Wages, Taxes, and Health Spending of Middle-Income Families, 2000-03, finds that most middle-income families lost ground between 2000 and 2003 and now have less income available to meet their needs.

Job quality calculation for Jobs Picture
Read about the calculation methods
Adobe Acrobat/PDF used to measure the quality of net new jobs.

The critical roles of education and innovation in creating jobs in a knowledge economy
Read the testimony presented by EPI senior economist Jared Bernstein before the Committee on Education and the Workforce of the U.S. House of Representatives on March 11, 2004.

Labor slump taking toll on working families
View EPI Research Director Lee Price's March 10, 2004 presentation before the Democratic Caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives, The longest sustained labor slump since the Great Depression is taking a toll on working families.

Bush Administration backs off prediction of "average" job growth
Shortly after the Bush Administration's Council of Economic Advisors released its economic report, the administration is already backing off its just-released jobs forecasts. Read the follow upAdobe Acrobat/PDF to the recent Issue Brief, Missing the Moving Target, that was jointly released by EPI and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and examines the Bush Administration's unrealistic projections for job growth in 2004.

Missing the Moving Target For Jobs
This Issue Brief jointly released by EPI and the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities examines the Bush Administration's unrealistic projections for job growth in 2004.

Understanding the severity of the current labor slump
For details on why today's labor market conditions are no cause for celebration, see the EPI Briefing Paper Understanding the severity of the current labor slump, updated with the most current employment data.

Weak recovery claims new victim: workers' wages
Read this EPI Issue Brief for an analysis of how inflation-adjusted hourly wages fell for middle- and low-wage men and women, making 2003 the worst year for wage growth over the past five years.

Measuring employment since the recovery (EPI Briefing Paper)
There are two primary measures of U.S. employment: the payroll survey and the household survey. Of the two, the payroll survey is a much more accurate and reliable measure of employment in the United States. Despite this, some analysts continue to use the household survey to measure employment, resulting in misreporting of employment numbers. Measuring employment since the recovery, a Briefing Paper by EPI economist Elise Gould, outlines the differences between the household and payroll surveys and explains why the payroll survey is the preferred measure of employment.

Labor market left behind (EPI Briefing Paper)
Although the recent recession was officially over as of November 2001, the job market remains in a rut. Unemployment has climbed, the nation’s payrolls reveal that 28 months after the recession began the United States is in the worst hiring slump since the Great Depression, and wages have been growing more slowly and falling in real terms for most workers. How could it be that the nation's economy is supposedly in recovery yet the job market is much weaker now than when the recession ended? The answer to this question and others can be found in EPI’s Labor Day Briefing Paper, Labor Market Left Behind.

EPI Senate testimony
In Senate testimony on June 9, 2003, Economic Policy Institute President Lawrence Mishel presented an analysis of the current jobs situation and offered a method for tracking the Bush Administration’s progress toward its stated goal of 5.5 million jobs by the end of next year.

EPI's Jobs Picture
For an analysis of the Bureau of Labor Statistics' employment report, see EPI's Jobs Picture the first Friday of every month.

EPI's Income Picture
For an analysis of the income data from the U.S. Bureau of the Census, read EPI's Income Picture.

Economic Snapshots
EPI's Economic Snapshots are a weekly presentation of downloadable charts and short analyses designed to track important economic issues. Below is a partial list of Snapshots on the subject of joblessness and labor market trends.

March 24, 2004 High-paying software jobs being moved abroad

March 15, 2004 Jobs fall behind growth in working-age population

February 25, 2004 Different sets of numbers tell the same story: Slow job growth

February 4, 2004 Wage and salary income yet to share in growth

January 21, 2004 Jobs shift from higher-paying to lower-paying industries

December 3, 2003 Fast growth for profits, slow growth for wages and benefits

August 27, 2003 Weak demand constrains job growth

August 6, 2003 Worst recovery on record in terms of job growth

May 28, 2003 The long goodbye—workers staying unemployed longer

May 7, 2003 Bush's dubious job claims

Background documents
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