Real Earnings Rise Slightly

Real average hourly earnings for all employees increased 0.2 percent from May to June, seasonally adjusted, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. For the year, real average hourly earnings increased 1.5 percent, seasonally adjusted, from June 2018 to June 2019. However, when the change in real average hourly earnings is combined with a 0.3-percent decrease in the average workweek, the result is in effect  a 1.2-percent increase in real average weekly earnings over this period.

As for the prices of goods, the Bureau reported today that the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.1 percent in June on a seasonally adjusted basis, the same increase as in May. Increases in the indexes for shelter, apparel, and used cars and trucks more than offset declines in energy indexes to result in the seasonally adjusted all items monthly increase in June.

When broken down, the index for all items less food and energy rose 0.3 in June, its largest monthly increase since January 2018. Along with the indexes for shelter, used cars and trucks, and apparel, the indexes for household furnishings and operations, medical care, and motor vehicle insurance were among the indexes that increased in June. The indexes for recreation, airline fares, and personal care all declined in June.

Consumer Price Index changes