This increase in average hourly earnings stems from a 2.5-percent increase in average hourly earnings being offset by a 2.3-percent increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W).
The increase in real average hourly earnings combined with no change in the average workweek resulted in a 0.2-percent increase in real average weekly earnings over this period.
Median weekly earnings of the nation's 114.9 million full-time wage and salary workers were $859 in the third quarter of 2017 (not seasonally adjusted). This was 3.9 percent higher than a year earlier, compared with a gain of 2.0 percent in the CPI-U.
Economic activity in the Twelfth District continued to expand at a moderate pace during the reporting period of mid-August through September. Overall price inflation was flat and remained low, while upward wage pressures strengthened somewhat, and labor market conditions tightened further. Sales of retail goods picked up, and growth in consumer and business services remained strong. Conditions in the manufacturing sector improved, while activity in the agriculture sector was flat. Contacts reported continued strong activity in residential real estate markets, and conditions in the commercial real estate sector remained solid. Lending activity grew at a moderate pace.
Cities jolted by a new CalPERS rate increase laid out in their annual pension reports this fall are finding few options for cost relief. Basically, they can pay more now to avoid higher costs later or curb the growth of employees and their pay.
As rising pension costs squeeze funding from government services, a big change could come from a state Supreme Court decision. Two unanimous rulings by appellate court panels allow cuts in pensions earned by current employees in the future.
Appeals of the two rulings have yet to be heard by the Supreme Court. How the high court will rule, and what might follow if the groundbreaking appellate rulings are upheld, is far from clear.
The productivity of workers in an economy depends, in part, on the flow of capital services enabling their production. Even in a closed economy, reductions in the corporate tax rates and the associated capital deepening may imply a higher marginal product of labor and higher wages. The ability of domestic U.S. firms to invest foreign profits overseas exacerbates the implications of corporate tax policy for domestic workers; an uncompetitive domestic corporate tax rate reduces the demand for U.S. workers by encouraging capital formation abroad. Indeed, when viewed in this way, the incidence of the corporate tax could theoretically fall entirely on U.S. workers, so long as workers are immobile and capital moves freely across borders.