Economist Mike Walden: Will the Real Average Income Stand Up?

I’ve often heard it claimed that average incomes in the country have made little progress this century, essentially moving sideways since 2000.  Is this an accurate description of what has happened?

  1. using the conventional measures, yes
  2. average household income – adjusted for inflation, trended upward from 2000-       2007
  3. then gave it all back during the Great Recession, and only up slightly since then
  4. same if adjust for household size
  5. but if use another inflation measure – that economists say is more accurate         because it rapidly adjusts for changes in purchases, then up 6% since 2000
  6. even more improvement if measure after taxes and after transfers – up 18%
  7. so, makes a difference based on what is being measured