Economists' Outlook

Housing stats and analysis from NAR's research experts.

2014 Year-End Employment Summary

  • Job gains accelerated in the second half of 2014.  The latest monthly data showed 252,000 net new payroll job additions in December.  Over the last 12 months, that total net of new jobs comes to a cool 3 million.  The pool of potential homebuyers and the need for commercial building spaces are therefore expanding.
  • From the low point of 2009, more than 10 million jobs have been created.  Recall, however, that 8 million jobs were lost during the painful recession in 2008-09.  Therefore, compared with the prior employment peak in 2007, the country has only 2 million workers now.  In the meantime over these years, the country’s population increased by nearly 19 million.
  • More jobs have pushed down the unemployment rate to 5.6 percent, which would be considered almost normal.  Frustratingly though for workers, the wages are barely rising.  In December the wage rate rose by 1.65 percent from one year before.  The weak wage growth is partly reflecting a considerably large number of people who are working part-time.
  • REALTORS® are mostly not on any company’s payroll and are not included in the wage data.  Commission income comes in lump sum and only if there is a closing.  All the time spent driving and doing research means nothing if the property does not close.  REALTOR® income also varies greatly from one year to the next and from one person to the next.
  • A typical wage rate by industry is shown below.  Note the lower wage rate for retail trade.  That is why it is rare to see the same Starbucks crew over a 12-month time span.  And each new crew tends to spell your name differently.

All Empl
Civ Unem
P-T Work

wage rate

Notice: The information on this page may not be current. The archive is a collection of content previously published on one or more NAR web properties. Archive pages are not updated and may no longer be accurate. Users must independently verify the accuracy and currency of the information found here. The National Association of REALTORS® disclaims all liability for any loss or injury resulting from the use of the information or data found on this page.

Advertisement

Comment Policy

The opinions expressed in reader comments sections on this website are those of the reader and not NAR or REALTOR® Magazine.

About Economists' Outlook

Visit this blog daily to see what NAR experts are saying about the economy, the housing market, and other factors that will impact your business.

Housing Minute

Housing Minute is a monthly video series highlighting the latest housing data from the National Association of REALTORS® in a minute or less.