CEPR: People Living Below the Income Poverty Line Today are Better Educated than Ever

Last April,  the Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) published Low Wage Workers Are Older and Better Educated than Ever, an issue brief showing that the average low-wage worker today is both older and much better educated than the average low-wage worker was in the past.

Yesterday, Shawn Fremstad noted on CEPR’s blog that, in addition, the number of middle-aged workers living below the poverty line with at least some college or a Bachelor’s Degree has nearly doubled between 1979 and 2010. In addition, the number of middle-aged workers living below the poverty line without a high school diploma has dropped by nearly 50% during that same period. Fremstad looks at this data nd concludes:

Increasing educational attainment by itself is not at all sufficient to reduce inequality and income poverty — we need stronger labor market institutions, particularly ones that increase workers bargaining power to address these issues.