Men Who Work Full-Time Earn Less Than 40 Years Ago

By Terence P. Jeffrey | April 28, 2014 | 12:48pm EDT

(AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

(CNSNews.com) - The real median income of American men who work full-time, year-round peaked forty years ago in 1973, according to data published by the U.S. Census Bureau.

In 1973, median earnings for men who worked full-time, year-round were $51,670 in inflation-adjusted 2012 dollars. The median earnings of men who work full-time year-round have never been that high again.

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In 2012, the latest year for which the Census Bureau has published an estimate, the real median earnings of men who worked full-time, year-round was $49,398. That was $2,272—or about 4.4 percent—below the peak median earnings of $51,670 in 1973.

In 1960, the earliest year for which the Census Bureau has published this data, the median earnings for men who worked full-time, year-round were $36,420 in 2012 dollars. Between 1960 and 1973 that increased $15,250—or about 41.9 percent.

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By comparison, the real median earnings of American women who work full-time year-round peaked in 2007, when women who worked full-time earned $38,872 in constant 2012 dollars. From 1960 through 2007, the real income of American women who work full-time increased $16,774 or about 76 percent. From 2007 to 2012, the real earnings of women who work full-time declined $1,081, or about 2.8 percent.

By “earnings,” the Census Bureau means money someone earns as an employee, which “includes wages, salary, armed forces pay, commissions, tips, piece-rate payments, and cash bonuses earned, before deductions are made for items such as taxes, bonds, pensions, and union dues.” It also includes “net income” from self-employment.

The business and economic reporting of CNSNews.com is funded in part with a gift made in memory of Dr. Keith C. Wold.

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