College degree isn't paying off in the job market

Students at the University of Birmingham take part in their degree congregations as they graduate on July 14, 2011 in Birmingham, England.

Steve Chiotakis: Later this week, President Obama will give a major speech to Congress on his plans to kick-start employment. Just about everybody who's
fortunate enough to have a job has been losing ground on wages lately. And it turns out, new college grads are no exception.

Marketplace's Bob Moon reports higher education isn't paying dividends as big as it used to.

Bob Moon: Lately, the procession of college graduates has had to join the parade of unemployed already looking for work. And according to research by the Economic Policy Institute, that means all their hard studying isn't paying off as much.

Heidi Shierholz: Employers know that they don't have to pay big wage and benefit packages when there's a queue of desperate new entrants to the labor market around the block.

Economist Heidi Shierholz says even as college costs have soared, the average starting wage for graduates dropped by roughly $1-an-hour over the past decade, to around $21.75 for men and $18.50 for women. There's still a wage premium for those who get their degree, but she says it's no longer growing.

Shierholz: College educated workers do, indeed, make a lot more money, both to start out with and over their lifetimes, but the payoff is stagnating.

She says there isn't much hope that'll change -- not with the jobless rate expected to stay above 8 percent well into 2014.

Shierholz: With unemployment that high for that long, there's just going to be nothing that's going to lift these wages up anytime soon.

If it's any consolation, Shierholz says that degree is still likely to improve your chance of at least finding a job.

I'm Bob Moon for Marketplace.

About the author

Bob Moon is Marketplace’s senior business correspondent, based in Los Angeles.
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How is College going to pay off if all foreign workers with their work visas are taking most if not all the jobs of US Citizens and legal residents!!! Do Universities care about this, NO!! will they ever care? probably not, otherwise Corporations and Colleges profits will decrease in the short term. All Universities care about is: enrolling as much students as they can to increase their profits, even if Colleges have to lie to students of the reality of what really happens after graduation, and the job market. It does not matter what gets in the way of these for profit educational Corps, ultimately they don't care if students find jobs or not!
Also most Universities and Colleges get $ full tuition paid from foreign workers/students = more $$. In other words is a cycle of corruption:

These paragraphs caught my attention as well:

Obama or whoever wants to be US President: their plans of creating new jobs must include to take back all the jobs which were replaced by foreign workers who are still unemployed. Many of them were asked to train their replacements before loosing jobs. They need to address the misuse and fraud of foreign work visas such as: H1b, H2b, L1 visa. Thanks to the US Govt, which created these work visas: these US Jobs are given to foreign workers (most times unqualified) allowing US companies to hire this group of people instead of qualified US legal residents and citizens causing our unemployment rate to continue to increase on a daily basis! For creating infrastructure we have best brains and best educational centers and must utilize our work source.
If people want the economy to get better, people should vote for those who are really working for the interest of the American people and not for the lobbyist and corporations who import workers to fill jobs and outsource jobs and technology for greed, increase their profits no matter what gets in their way, keep shareholders happy, and pay Top executives as much as possible.

Good examples of this sad and unfair reality are the movies: The Company Men (2010) and parts of Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (2010)

This is the current reality of the job market in the USA:

Top 100 H1B Visa Sponsors -2011 H1B Visa Report:

Rank H1B Visa Sponsor H1B Visa Petitions Average Salary
1 Microsoft 2,505 $96,497
2 IBM 1,263 $80,908
11 Intel 404 $95,714
14 Oracle 376 $104,080
16 Google 355 $103,129
17 Hewlett Packard 340 $99,344
21 Yahoo 308 $105,112
26 Amazon com 255 $99,459
27 Motorola 249 $95,861
45 Apple 175 $110,987
47 Cisco Systems 169 $117,662
84 SAP America 102 $105,498
91 PayPal 98 $105,008
185 AT&T 91 Sign In
3 Facebook 86 Sign In

These companies don't give a s* if mergers cause mass layoffs, higher prices for consumers, or if thousands of US legal families are having a hard time (thanks to their "hiring practices"), America's Unemployment Rate, new graduates unemployment rate etc..

*** Important *** Please see link below about an important Bill Congress is planning to pass. Your support on this is imperative for everyone who has been affected / displaced by people with foreign work visas, H1B visas, or the unemployed, or the ones who do not have a solid full-time employment history in their resume.

Please take action, vote and share your comments at:

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