America’s Dynamic Workforce

September 12, 2006The Hill

Those who hoped that the collapse of the World Trade Center buildings would collapse the American economy have been greatly disappointed. Five-years after those horrific attacks, America’s economy is strong and growing — thanks to the strength, resiliency and competitiveness of our nation’s economy and our workforce.

The national unemployment rate (4.7 percent in August) is a full one percent lower than the 5.7 percent average for the decade of the 1990s. Our economy has generated job growth for 36 months straight, with more than 5.7 million net new jobs created since August 2003. In 2005, real hourly earnings were 1.7 percent higher than in 2000, compared to a 1.6 percent decline in real earnings between 1990 and 1995.

Moreover, the average amount of total compensation in 2005 was 7 percent higher than in 2000. Workers know that overall compensation is what really counts because it includes all of the benefits that workers cherish, including health care coverage, paid time off and retirement benefits.

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