Census Bureau Reveals Grim Facts about Real Earnings of US Men, by Wolf Richter. The pattern is similar in Australia.
These figures are adjusted for CPI, which significantly underestimates “true inflation” or the actual erosion in buying power, so the actual picture is even worse.
Most of the productivity gains since the 1970s have been captured by the finance industry and the asset shufflers — rather than the mass of workers. This essentially is due to the way money is manufactured out of thin air in our society — it’s no coincidence that that the black line in the graph stopped going up in 1971, the year the West broke the last link between gold and currency. Income equality is higher now than it’s been since the 1930s.
This phenomenon of disproportionate income gains at the top doesn’t even include capital gains, which would skew the chart into the stratosphere.