Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Execs, Top Earners Account for More than Third of All US Wages

The Wall Street Journal is reporting the nation’s corporate executives and other highly compensated employees now account for more than one-third of all salaries earned in the United States. According to Social Security Administration figures, top earners pulled in $2.1 trillion of the total $6.4 trillion paid in 2007. The numbers don’t include several types of stock options and other benefits that would add hundreds of millions to the top bracket’s earnings. From 2002 to 2007, the average worker saw a 24 percent pay increase, half the 48 percent increase for the highly paid. The rising pay for top earners appears to be adversely affecting Social Security. With more wages beyond the maximum that can be taxed to contribute to the Social Security trust, less money is available to fund retirement benefits for American workers.

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