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The U.S. Census Bureau and the Local Employment Dynamics (LED) Partnership in collaboration with the Council for Community and Economic Research (C2ER) and the Labor Market Institute (LMI), welcomes Patrick Flaherty as he presents, “Manufacturing Workers Age Profile and Implications for Earnings.” Before the pandemic, Connecticut experienced a rise in manufacturing employment along with evidence that employment growth would be even stronger if employers could find the right workers to hire. Employers reported hundreds of unfilled openings. Nevertheless, the average wage in manufacturing from traditional statistics, such as the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) did not increase at the pace that would be expected given a labor shortage in this industry. The Quarterly Workforce Indicators (QWI) data set helps to solve this puzzle. By examining employment, hires and separations by age and wage the composition of the manufacturing workforce is changing and that average wages are being held down because highly paid older workers are separating (presumably retiring) while newly hired younger workers are earning less than the older workers they are replacing.
Patrick Flaherty, Assistant Director of Research and Information, Connecticut Department of Labor