- When the Covid crisis struck, economists worried that poorer workers might suffer a permanent setback.
- But wage growth among lower-paid and less-educated workers outstripped wage growth among the better-paid and more highly educated.
- Analyzing microdata data from the household survey the Labor Department uses to help gauge the labor market, the economists find that among workers with a high-school education or less, it is the young—those under 40—who have seen the most significant wage gains.
- Part of what might have driven the wage gains is that the onset of the pandemic unstuck many less-educated workers from jobs that paid worse than they might have gotten elsewhere.
- Helpings this process, several rounds of relief payments from the government might have given them the wherewithal to shop for a better job.
Low-Wage Workers Climb the Earnings Ladder
The Covid crisis caused wage growth among lower-paid and less-educated workers to outstrip wage growth among the better-paid and more highly educated. Relief payments from the government allowed them to shop for a better job.