Hopes for strong wage growth in the jobs report for June were dashed Thursday, as the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that average hourly earnings were flat at $24.95 and up just 2 percent on the year.
After years of weak wage growth following the recession, many analysts have seen signs in recent data that earnings may be picking up. But June's data represented a step backward.
At 2 percent annually, earnings growth is well below the 3 percent to 4 percent Federal Reserve chairwoman Janet Yellen has said would be healthy. Goldman Sachs has placed the number consistent with a healthy economy at 3.5 percent.
Just this Tuesday, Federal Reserve vice chairman Stanley Fischer said that "we are seeing tentative indications of an acceleration in labor compensation."