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Understanding Low-Wage Work in the United States

  • Heather Boushey
  • Shawn Fremstad
  • Rachel Gragg
  • Margy Waller

Over 40 million jobs in the United States - about 1 in 3 - pay low wages ($11.11 per hour or less) and often do not offer employment benefits like health insurance, retirement savings accounts, paid sick days or family leave. These low-wage jobs are replacing jobs that have historically supported a broad middle class. This report provides a clear and sobering picture of the low-wage labor market through analysis of labor market data, including: downward wage trends over time, poor work conditions, largest occupations, and declining mobility. The authors used a social inclusion definition of low-wage work that allows for comparison among jobs in the United States.

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Paper provided by Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) in its series CEPR Reports and Issue Briefs with number 2007-09.

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Date of creation: Mar 2007
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Handle: RePEc:epo:papers:2007-09
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