Powell Says U.S. Workers and Wages Are Better Off Today

(Bloomberg) -- Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said in testimony before the Senate Banking Committee that the typical worker is better off in today’s labor market.

  • Wage gains are still better than trend inflation: Powell
    • Senator Sherrod Brown, top Democrat on panel, asked Powell about real wages in light of perceived weak growth
  • Prime-age labor force participation climbing is “a very healthy sign,” Powell says
    • “We really hope that these gains in participation can be sustained”
    • People on edges of labor force have benefited the most: Powell
  • “In tight labor markets, workers are more likely going to be paid well”
  • Says Fed doesn’t control most things driving down labor share
  • NOTE: Wage gains missed forecasts in June and have been tepid despite a tight labor market
  • NOTE: Fed has been focused on quandary of why labor force participation anemic
  • Earlier: Fed’s Powell Says Gradual Rate Hikes Are the Best Path ‘For Now’

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