News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Days after Democrat convention came news of drastic downward revision in US wages, instead of rising 4.2% in 1Q2016 wages declined .4% per BLS Aug. 9. In 2Q 2016 wages fell another 1.4% per BLS. Since Dec. 2015, a 2% drop. In June 2016 before revision Obama told the world false 'good news' of 3% wage growth in 2016

8/9/16, "Shock: Americans’ Wages Dropping Fast in 2016," Neil Munro, Breitbart

"Federal data released Aug. 9 shows that Americans’ wages are dropping again, seven years after President Barack Obama declared the economy had recovered from the property-bubble — and three months before the 2016 election.

The dramatic drop was buried in an Aug. 9 report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which said that officials have radically revised their prior claim that wages grew 4.2 percent in the first quarter, from January to March.

“Real hourly compensation decreased 0.4 percent after revision, rather than the previously-published increase of 4.2 percent,” the BLS admitted. Compensation also fell another 1.4 percent in the second quarter, from April to June, the BLS admitted in the same report. That’s 2 percent drop in wages since December.







Pay shrank 0.3 percent in 2013, rose a mere 1.1 percent in 2014, but rose a promising 2.7 percent in 2015, according to the BLS.
The wage drop is a potential p.r. problem for Obama, who has been touting the apparent rise in wages since officials reported that wages grew 2.7 percent during 2015.

In June, Obama cited the mistaken 2016 wage-growth claim while arguing the economy was finally helping ordinary Americans“Let’s get wages rising faster,” Obama declared in a speech at Concord Community High School, Elkhart, Indiana.
I also know that I’ve spent every single day of my presidency focused on what I can do to grow the middle class and increase jobs, and boost wages…Here’s the good news: Wages are actually growing at a rate of about 3 percent so far this year. That’s the good news. Working Americans are finally getting a little bigger piece of the pie. But we’ve got to accelerate that.  
That speech was advertised as his first speech of the 2016 campaign, and he continued his wage-boosting theme during his July 27 speech at the Democratic Convention;
If you’re really concerned about pocketbook issues and seeing the economy grow, and creating more opportunity for everybody, then the choice isn’t even close. If you want someone with a lifelong track record of fighting for higher wages, and better benefits, and a fairer tax code, and a bigger voice for workers…you should vote for Hillary Clinton.
But Obama’s own political priorities have helped force wages down in the job market, even as he works to deliver more benefits via government offices to lower-paid Americans."...

[Ed. note: Free trade deals are another major factor responsible for keeping down US wages. Obama's own advisor on free trade deals says: ""TPP does nothing for Americans....Companies are scouring the globe for countries they can get to produce most cheaply.” That, he said, results in constant downward pressure on American wages. “They may yield support for the stock-holding class but it’s not creating jobs.”" Quoting Michael Wessel...10/9/2015, "Wikileaks release of TPP deal text stokes 'freedom of expression' fears," UK Guardian, Sam Thielman in NY. It's simple math, no college degree needed. We're  slaves.] 
 
(continuing): "One huge cause of declining wages is the federal government’s decision to import roughly 2 million migrants and guest-workers each year. They compete for work against the four million young native-born Americans who begin looking for work each year. That one-for-two flood of extra labor creates a huge surplus of U.S. workers, which drives down wages.
 
That wage-cutting labor surplus is hidden by federal unemployment numbers which suggests that only 1 out of 20 Americans are unemployed.  But the reality is that the many Americans and immigrants who do not have a full-time job are slyly discounted in the official reports.

“In addition to the [6.9 million recognized] unemployed, 28 percent (48.5 million) of working-age (16 to 65) natives were not in the labor force This is much higher than the 25.3 percent rate (42.1 million) in the same quarter of 2007 and the 22.9 percent rate (35.7 million) in 2000,”  said a July study from Steve Camarota, the research director at the Center for Immigration Studies, “

Overall, “55.4 million working-age, native-born Americans [were] without jobs in the first quarter of 2016, compared to 41.1 million in the same quarter of 2000,” he wrote.

In contrast, when immigration is kept low, wages tend to rise during economic growth. For example, wages rose sharply in the low-immigration decades between 1925 and 1969. Blue-collar wages also climbed in 1998 and 1999 when the fast-growing economy ran out of workers. Also, in Arizona, wages and research into labor-saving technology rose once many illegals were sent home in the mid-2000s.

Currently, U.S. agriculture companies are complaining about rising wages because many of their illegal-immigrant workers are migrating away from the farms and towards the cities“We’re probably experiencing the most critical labor shortage” since 2002, complained Tom Nassif, president and CEO of the Western Growers Association, a trade association of agricultural companies who want illegal-immigrant farm workers to get work permits, perhaps via an amnesty deal. “Wages are going up dramatically… [the labor shortage] encourage[s] people who are farmworkers to play musical chairs by going from farmer to farmer, seeking higher wages, and the farmers are competing with each other by raising those wages,” he complained

Growing wages are a huge headache for CEOs, partly because higher wages shrink profits and slash stock values on Wall Street. 

Obama tried and failed to get a wage-cutting amnesty deal in 2013 because he’s willing to let Americans’ workplace wages stall if he can increase the Democratic Party’s power to deliver benefits via government.

Obama made that political strategy clear in 2006, when he admitted  in his autobiography that large-scale migration hurts Americans wages. This huge influx of mostly low-skill workers provides some benefits to the economy as a whole… [but] it also threatens to depress further the wages of blue-collar Americans,” including blue-collar African-Americans.... 

But those brown immigrants would help the Democratic Party, he wrote. “In my mind, at least, the fates of black and brown were to be perpetually intertwined, the cornerstone of a [Democratic] coalition that could help America live up to its [progressive] promise,” he wrote in “The Audacity of Hope.”

Obama’s welcome for migrants is also rooted in his progressive views that Americans’ legal rights must be shared with all foreigners, regardless of their political beliefs, cultures or impact on the Americans’ wages.

In a November 2014 speech on immigration, for example, Obama told a Chicago audience that “there have been periods where the folks who were already here suddenly say, ‘Well, I don’t want those folks,’ even though the only people who have the right to say that are some Native Americans.

Sometimes we get attached to our particular tribe, our particular race, our particular religion, and then we start treating other folks differently…that, sometimes, has been a bottleneck to how we think about immigration, Obama said, shortly after he announced his Oval Office plan to award work-permits to roughly 4 million additional illegal immigrants.

Obama’s combination of progressive ideology and strategy is why he has allowed 400,000 unskilled Central American migrants into the country since 2010.

He’s also provided a quasi-amnesty to almost 800,000 illegal immigrants since 2012, tried to provide a quasi-amnesty to four million illegals in November 2014, is bringing in 65,000 unskilled Syrian migrants by October, and pushed for the 2013 immigration bill that would have added at least 33 million legal migrants to this nation of 310 million Americans by 2023. Obama has also expanded the annual inflow of temporary “guest workers” from 700,000 per year to roughly 800,000 per year. 

In contrast, Donald Trump’s proposed immigration reform would reduce unemployment, drive up Americans’ wages and reducing housing costs, according to a recent Wall Street study that claimed to be critical of his policies."

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The Establishment admits in 2016 State of the Union speech: Immigration does cut US wages:

1/12/16, "Obama: Yeah, Immigration Does Cut Wages For Americans," Neil Munro, Breitbart

"President Barack Obama grudgingly admitted Tuesday night that mass-immigration does reduce Americans’ wages.

The admission came in the final year of his eight-year tenure, during which a huge inflow of low-wage workers — who double as welfare-funded consumers — has kept Americans’ wages flat and the stock market running high.

The final official text of his Jan. 12 State of the Union speech said “Immigrants aren’t the reason wages haven’t gone up enough; those decisions are made in the boardrooms that too often put quarterly earnings over long-term returns.”

But he departed from the text, and actually said that “immigrants aren’t the principal reason wages haven’t gone up enough; those decisions are made in the boardrooms that too often put quarterly earnings over long-term returns.”

When he said “principal,” he admitted that immigration has at least a partial impact on wages, even as he tried to pin most of the wage-cutting blame on CEOs who keep pace with their competitors by rationally paying lower wages during a government-imposed glut of native and imported labor.

Obama’s admission that immigration cuts wages is a rare acknowledgement by an establishment politician that the law of supply and demand does operate in the labor market, despite much denial by immigration-boosters.

But it is also a politically awkward admission by Obama — because Obama and his establishment allies in the GOP and in business want to increase the annual inflow of foreign workers and consumers into the U.S. economy. House Speaker Paul Ryan is one of those allies — he’s been pushing for years to allow companies to hire “any willing worker” from the U.S. or overseas.

In 2013, for example, Obama used existing laws and his presidential power to pump up the inflow to 2 million foreign workers, even as 4 million young Americans began looking for jobs. Unsurprisingly, that year, the extra foreign labor flattened wages, boosted corporate profits and spiked the stock market.
The extra immigration also cuts wages for American white-collar professionals, who are locked out of jobs and good wages by a resident population of at least 1 million foreign college-grad guest-workers, plus millions more immigrant college-grads....

Those wage-cuts and profit-spikes are why the GOP’s CEO supporters want greater immigration. Of course, the CEO will be long retired when the migrants become citizens and subsequently vote Obama’s younger allies into power, just as Democrats now use immigrants’ votes to dominate the economically divided state of California.

That’s also obviously a bad deal for Americans, who see their own and their children’s wages, political power and civic peace traded away for the mutual benefit of progressives, business groups and foreign migrants and cultures.

Obama has long known that mass immigration cuts wagesbut that’s a price he’s willing to impose on Americans to achieve his progressive fundamental transformation of the United States. Obama made his intentions clear in 2006, when he wrote in his autobiography that large-scale migration hurts the wages of African-Americans.

This huge influx of mostly low-skill workers provides some benefits to the economy as a whole… [but] it also threatens to depress further the wages of blue-collar Americans,” Obama admitted.

But those immigrants would help the Democratic Party, he wrote. “In my mind, at least, the fates of black and brown were to be perpetually intertwined, the cornerstone of a coalition that could help America live up to its promise,” he wrote in “The Audacity of Hope.”

That reach for progressive power cancels Americans’ right to control their borders, says Obama. In November 2014, for example, Obama told a Chicago audience that “there have been periods where the folks who were already here suddenly say, ‘Well, I don’t want those folks,’ even though the only people who have the right to say that are some Native Americans.

Sometimes we get attached to our particular tribe, our particular race, our particular religion, and then we start treating other folks differently…that, sometimes, has been a bottleneck to how we think about immigration,” Obama said in the same Chicago speech, which was intended to justify his decision to grant work-permits to roughly 5 million foreign migrants living illegally in the United States."...

[Ed. note: Who does Obama mean by "we"?]

(continuing): "Obama’s give-away was later stopped — perhaps temporarily — by federal courts, not by the GOP’s leaders in Congress."

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9/25/2014, Newsweek: "Powerful forces...have reduced working-class wages around the globe."...

"Whichever approach is taken by the political parties to lure the white working class, it’s going to have to go up against powerful forces that have reduced working-class wages around the globe."...

"Why Working-Class White Men Make Democrats Nervous," Newsweek, by Matthew Cooper


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8/5/16, "Since 2014 The US Has Added Half A Million Waiters and Bartenders And No Manufacturing Workers: Here's Why," Zero Hedge, Durden 

"As part of our monthly tradition showing the gaping disparity in the quality of the US labor market, we present the breakdown between the lowest paid jobs available, those for workers in "food services and drinking places", also known as waiters and bartenders, and compare them to the number of workers in the traditionally best paid sector, manufacturing. 
Here is the bottom line: as the chart below shows, there have been half a million waiter and bartender jobs added since 2014, and no manufacturing jobs

This explains why contrary to the BLS's seasonally adjusted models optimistically showing a pick up in wage growth, the US economy has so far failed to observe any form of benign demand-pull inflation. 

So what accounts for this troubling deteriorating in the US labor market continue every single month? Here is one explanation.

Back in January, the ECRI's Lakshman Achuthan’s made a troubling observation. The sustained decline in the official jobless rate – now near the Fed’s estimate of “full employment” – is a misleading indicator of labor market health, he said. 

Indeed, the stagnation in nominal wage growth is consistent with the weakness in the employment/population (E/P) ratio. After dropping to three-decade lows in the wake of the Great Recession, the E/P ratio has barely improved since the fall of 2013, reversing only a quarter of its decline from its pre-recession highs. 

Furthermore – as a breakdown of the E/P ratio by education level shows – even this modest improvement is illusory. 

Since 2011, when the E/P ratio for those with less than a high school diploma bottomed, that metric has now regained all of its recessionary losses (green line). But the E/P ratio for high school or college graduates – i.e., eight out of nine American adults – has not recovered any of its recessionary losses, and has barely budged in four years (red line). 

We have updated the chart below and it looks as follows:

Unfortunately, this data underscores how the jobs recovery has been spearheaded by cheap labor, with job gains going disproportionately to the least educated — and lowest-paid — workers, many of whom have to work multiple jobs to make ends meets. 

It also means that while the BLS can liberally apply seasonal adjustment lipstick on the unadjusted payrolls report to make it more attractive, the truth for most Americans is that the so-called recovery continue to escape most working-age Americans. The only good news is that restaurant workers appear to still be hiring... at least until all new waiters are replaced by robots." charts from Zero Hedge

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