Sometimes the Economic Equations Are Simple: Declining Union Membership = Lower Wages = Higher Corporate Profits = Higher CEO Pay: Part 1

ACADEME BLOG

Declining Union Membership

Workers Pay and Union Rates

“Over the last three decades, U.S. labor union membership has fallen by nearly half, even though more Americans are actually in favor of unionization.

“Some 11% of all wage and salary workers in 2014 were in a union — down from 22% in 1983 after peaking at nearly 35% in 1954, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data analyzed in a report from the Pew Research Center, a Washington, D.C.-based nonpartisan think tank. The decline of organized labor has affected nearly all occupational groups, but not uniformly, according to BLS data. The biggest declines, in fact, have come in occupations that were — and still are — among the most unionized in the country, especially those dominated by the private sector such as construction, transportation and maintenance and repair. “More jobs require a college education,” says Harry Holzer, economist at the McCourt School of Public Policy at…

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