Wages for recent college grads are not keeping up

by Grace

Wages are rising, but not for young grads

A new analysis from the San Francisco Fed finds entry-level earnings for new college grads — defined as working graduates age 21 to 25 — grew only by 6 percent from April 2007 to April 2014. In comparison, median weekly earnings for all workers grew two-and-a-half times as fast, at 15 percent. And while recent grads tend to fall behind after any recession, the gap since the Great Recession has been both wide and long-lasting.

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Is this cyclical or structural?

There are differences of opinion about whether this stagnation is due to a short-term economic downturn or arises from a more fundamental problem, “like a mismatch between recent grads’ skills and open positions”.

One thing that seems clear is that as the percentage of the population with college degrees continues to increase,  there are “too many college graduates chasing too few college-level jobs”.

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Related:  “Technological advancements stunt job growth – ‘the great paradox of our era'”

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Danielle Kurtzleben, “Young college grads’ wage growth is falling farther and farther behind”, Vox, July 21, 2014.

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