Why Is Productivity Growth So Sluggish?

To start off the week, here is one of the enduring puzzles of the past decade: why has labor productivity grown so slowly during the recovery from the Great Recession?

Is it because the minimum wage hasn’t gone up much, giving employers little incentive to replace people with machines? Is it because the best minds of our generation are creating dating apps instead of useful labor-saving devices? Is it because the early stages of AI are so hit-and-miss that it does as much harm as good?

Leave your guess in comments. The winner gets an all-expenses-paid tenured professorship at Harvard.

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

payment methods

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2020 demands.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate