Thursday, June 21, 2007

Working Harder and Making Less

According to a Wall Street Journal article, men in their thirties today make less on an inflation adjusted basis than their fathers. In addition, wages are rising less the the productivity increase. From 1974 to 2000, productivity rose 56% while wages rose 29%. From 2000 to 2005, productivity rose 16% while incomes fell 2%.

I expect that my daughter will grow up in a world where income growth will be even more challenging. I expect that long term (and perhaps even medium term) careers with large corporations will be long gone. Careers in high paying professions such medicine, engineering or the sciences may be outsourced to Asia. Knowing this, we will need to prepare her to be more innovative, more adaptive and more strategic during her working lifetime. I expect our daughter will need to make choices and decisions about work that her parents never faced.

On the other hand, where there is uncertainty and change, there is always opportunity. If we can prepare her to see and take advantage of new opportunities, we will have been successful in one aspect of parenting.

For more on Crossing Generations, check back every Thursday for a new segment.

Photo Credit:, Orchid

This is not financial advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

Copyright © 2007 Achievement Catalyst, LLC


Anonymous said...

I believe the American working class, and especially the unskilled, are in for a protracted decline in their standard of living.

Super Saver said...

Minimum Wage,

Thanks for your commment.

I agree and I think all Americans workers (skilled and unskilled) are faced with potential declines in standards of living and risks of having their jobs outsourced.