Economic Impact: Wage Gains Remain Elusive

Slow wage growth is one of the side effects of a weak labor market. Even though the U.S. unemployment rate has fallen to 5.5 percent in February, the rate that includes people working part time who would rather work full time and the marginally attached is 11.0 percent. With plenty of jobseekers to choose from, firms have been stingy with wage increases. From 2009 (the year the recession ended) through 2014, annual average wages in the Richmond metro area rose 1.7 percent.