More than half of workers say income has failed to keep pace with inflation: Survey – The Hill
Story at a glance
- A new survey found that of the 61 percent of workers who saw a wage increase or achieved a better paying job in the past year, only two in five said their new income matches or exceeds inflation.
- Nearly half of the same group said their wages failed to meet demand.
- Overall, 55 percent of American workers said their wages have not kept pace with inflation.
Americans are struggling to keep up with inflation even though half of the workforce received a wage increase last year, according to a new survey.
Bankrate’s September salary increase survey found that of the 61 percent of workers who saw a pay increase or had a better-paying job in the past year, only two in five said their new income matches or exceeds inflation.
Nearly half of respondents in the same group said their wages had failed to meet demand.
“Inflation, which has reached its highest levels in more than four decades, has stripped purchasing power away from households of all walks of life,” Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at Bankrate, said in a statement.
“Even half of those receiving a salary increase, a promotion, or taking on new responsibilities said higher wages did not amount to an increase in household expenses,” McBride added.
Overall, 55 percent of American workers said their wages have not kept pace with inflation, while about a third said their wages have kept pace with demand.
However, there are differences between generations. Nearly half of Millennial and Gen Z employees said their pay increases matched or exceeded inflation, while a third of Baby Boomers and Generation X employees said the same.
The survey found that, however, in the midst of the economic downturn and fears of a recession, most workers are not afraid to lose their jobs.
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Gas prices are dropping while the prices of household goods and other energy sources are rising, resulting in a slight increase in inflation in August.
Tuesday’s consumer price index, which measures inflation, rose 0.1 percent last month even though gasoline prices continued to fall from record levels earlier this summer.
“Today’s higher-than-expected CPI reading shows we still have a long way to go before inflation returns to more normal levels,” Scott Brave, chief consumer spending economist at Morning Consult, said in an analysis.
“While the recent drop in gas prices has provided a welcome respite for consumers, it represents only one part of the larger consumer basket, and prices for most of this basket continue to rise at rates far exceeding income,” he added.
Average gas prices nationwide fell to $3.69 a gallon Thursday, according to data from the American Automobile Association (AAA).