The overall fall in weekly earnings was the result of a 0.2% increase in wages being offset by a 0.3% fall in the average weekly hours worked. A 0.1% increase in the Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) was also seen and contributed to the overall figure, according to a news release from the DoL.
In December, the average weekly earnings rose 0.5%, riding on the back of a 0.3% increase in the average weekly hours worked (See Average Weekly Earnings Jump 0.5% in December ).
Year-over-year weekly earnings from January 2004 to January 2005 rose 2.3%, seasonally adjusted, according to the DoL. However, after deflation of the CPI-W on the year, average weekly earnings decreased by 0.7%.
Before adjusting for inflation and seasonal change, the average weekly earnings in January were $538.86, up from $517.82 a year ago.