Americans have been waiting for a solid pay raise for years. Maybe there's good news awaiting them as the country employs more people.
The U.S. economic recovery has gone on for eight long years, and the unemployment rate is at a low 4.4 percent. But wage gains have barely budged.
That's got economists scratching their heads.
Andrew Chamberlain, the chief economist at the jobs and recruiting company Glassdoor, says even as the unemployment rate fell to a 16-year low recently, wage growth has slowed. The company's own data for July confirm that. He says it shows "very sluggish growth, the slowest pace we've recorded in about three years and it's the sixth straight month that pay growth has declined."
The Labor Department's numbers aren't quite that bad, but they do show wage growth averaging 2.5 percent in the past four months after peaking at 2.9 percent in December. (The latest figures will be part of Friday's employment report for July.) Chamberlain says wage growth at this stage of an economic recovery should be close to 3.5 percent.