The Amazing U.S. Labor Pool

Is its growth holding wages down?

It's a riddle wrapped in a mystery. With U.S. unemployment at a 24-year low, you might think wages would be taking off. Yet labor costs have remained unusually subdued--leading experts to speculate that some new development is inhibiting wage demands. While the explanation du jour seems to be widespread job insecurity, one trend clearly deserves more attention: an unexpected leap in the labor force.

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