The median household income in January was $50,020, or 5.4% lower than it was in June 2009, the beginning of the economic recovery, according to a new estimate from Sentier Research, based on Census data.
This decline in income comes despite improvements in the job market. The unemployment rate stood to 8.3% in January, down from 9.5% when the recovery started.
The longer-term view is even more depressing. Median income is down 7.8% since the recession began in December 2007 and 8.7% since January 2000.
Though jobs are coming back, many of them are lower-wage positions in retail stores, restaurants and temporary help. A report released Monday by Intuit showed that small businesses continued to add positions in February, but they were mainly on the lower end of the pay scale.
During this 2007 – preset period congressional pay increased by 5%. In fairness, the average pay for a rank and file congressional member has not changed from $174,000 since 2009.
After all, the number of voters who give Congress favorable marks for its job performance has reached double digits for the first time in nearly a year.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 10% of Likely U.S. Voters now rate Congress' performance as good or excellent. That's up from five percent (5%) last month and the highest positive finding since last March. But 63% still think Congress is doing a poor job, although that down from 70% a month ago.