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A report by the Economic Policy Institute shows that the decline in wages in Michigan is tied to the decline in collective bargaining.
According to the report, which was referenced in an Oct. 15 article in the Detroit News, the wealthiest 5 percent of Americans saw their incomes grow by 55.8 percent between 1979 and 2009. During that same time, the nation's average household income increased just 7.3 percent, resulting in a wider gap between high and average earnings.
In Michigan, it was even worse: Top incomes rose by 60.5 percent, while middle-class incomes declined, by 11.2 percent, to below the national average.