In the massive job loss due to the pandemic, proportionately more non-union workers lost jobs than union workers. That effectively boosted union membership rates to 10.8 percent in 2020. “The unionization share and number of members grew among Blacks and Hispanics, and the gender gap continued to narrow,” said Hayley Brown in a new analysis. See the Union Membership Byte for detailed national and state-level analysis.
Analysis of today’s GDP reflects the ravages of the Pandemic Economy. Fourth quarter growth put the GDP 2.5 percent below its year-ago level. But “a high savings rate indicates a strong basis for recovery once the pandemic is controlled,” says Dean Baker. See the GDP Byte for a full analysis.
“President Biden’s proposal to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025 is prompting a backlash from the usual suspects,” writes Dean Baker. So, he put together a handy guide to the truth in this post. For starters, “the 12 years since the last increase in the minimum wage is the longest period without a hike since the federal minimum wage was first established in 1938.” But Baker also reveals that some opposition to raising the minimum wage comes from a lobbying group for the restaurant industry. “While few researchers may deliberately cook their results to favor the fast-food industry, they know they can get funding for research that finds a higher minimum wage leads to job loss.”
CEPR was one of over 70 policy, faith-based, and labor organizations urging the Biden administration overhaul US policy toward Central America and to enact immigration reforms that defend human rights and truly address root causes that push people to leave the region in search of safety. An open letter to President Biden reads in part: “We support and will hold you to your commitment to reverse the Trump administration’s draconian immigration policies and respect the human rights of migrants,” but you must go further. US support for corrupt, repressive governments, such as the one led by alleged narcotrafficker Juan Orlando Hernández in Honduras, is a major contributor to these root causes, the letter points out.
“The Bolsonaro government’s inability to manage the COVID-19 pandemic along with a renewed push to return to austerity together mean that Brazil could soon enter a severe economic, humanitarian, social, and political crisis,” Jeremy Ross writes at The Americas Blog.
CEPR is up on Instagram. Check out @ceprdc to see how we promote democratic debate on the most important domestic and international economic and social issues affecting people’s lives.
CEPR’s groundbreaking Revolving Door Project scrutinizes executive branch appointees to ensure they use their office to serve the broad public interest, rather than to entrench corporate power or seek personal advancement. Visit the Personnel Map and Agency Spotlight, sign up for the newsletter and follow @revolvingdoorDC on Twitter.
- BBC 5 Live, interviewing Mark Weisbrot, We Build Up to the US Presidential Inauguration
- WAMU-FM/Kojo Nnamdi Show, interviewing Eileen Appelbaum, Why Has The Recession Disproportionately Affected Women And People Of Color?
- The Washington Post, quoting Mark Weisbrot, Janet Yellen Faces Critical Choice for Global Economy, Poor Nations Rocked by Coronavirus
- Newsday, quoting Hayley Brown, Union Membership Falls in New York for the Third Year
- Miami Herald, quoting Jake Johnston, Before Leaving Office, Trump Sends Final Deportation Flight to Haiti
- Bloomberg, citing CEPR, Why Biden’s Minimum Wage Idea Is Old News for States
Subscribe to Dean Baker’s commentary on economic reporting on Patreon to support Dean’s work and for early access to special content. Or, sign up for a weekly email roundup of Beat the Press. It’s the publication that everyone’s raving about!
New York Magazine: “[Beat the Press] aims a critical but judicious eye at economics reporting.”