The negative report was on A6. The positive report – which contained new data contradicting the first one – was relegated to the biz section, as Ken Shepard reports:
What a difference three days make. 72 little hours.
In that time, a New York Times reporter went from tolling the death knell of real wage growth to reporting a 7-percent wage jump over last year after inflation.
“[T]he current expansion has a chance to become the first sustained period of economic growth since World War II that fails to offer a prolonged increase in real wages,” The New York Times’ David Leonhardt and Steven Greenhouse somberly noted in their page A6 article in the August 28 edition. […]
But new data released on August 30 pushed Leonhardt to admit the death of wage growth he wrote about earlier might be greatly exaggerated.
In an August 31 Business Day section story about new government data on the gross domestic product (GDP), Leonhardt found economists arguing the new report “was a welcome sign at a time of significant uncertainty about the economy’s direction.”
“Perhaps the biggest surprise,” Leonhardt noted, “was new evidence of a surge in wage-and-salary income in the first half of this year,” with pay up “at an annual pace around 7 percent after adjusting for inflation,” according to “an economic consulting firm, MFR.”
Guess which story got the most attention?
UPDATE: Answer here.
UPDATE II: The about-face is especially important because it involves wages, upon which liberals have increasingly focused their criticism of the economy. Check out this Glenn Reynolds post on the topic and follow the links for more discussion.