Employment cost can be broken down into two major components, wages and salaries, and benefits. Benefit costs increased faster than wages and salaries for most industries over the last decade. Between the fourth quarter of 2000 and the fourth quarter of 2001, the average benefit costs of all workers in private industry rose 5.11 percent, while their average wage and salary rose 3.79 percent.
|All Workers (Index)||Q4 00||Q4 01|
|Benefits (private industries)||158.60||166.70|
|Benefits (private industries) percent change from same quarter previous year||5.59||5.11|
|Total compensation (private industries)||150.90||157.20|
|Total compensation (private industries) percent change from same quarter previous year||4.36||4.17|
|Wages and salaries (private industries)||147.70||153.30|
|Wages and salaries (private industries) percent change from same quarter previous year||3.87||3.79|
NOTES: The current value is compared to the value from the same period in the previous year to account for seasonality.
Employment cost to employers is the total compensation cost incurred by employers in obtaining labor inputs. Compensation costs include wages, salaries, and employer costs for employee benefits. Employment costs of transportation industry is the weighted average of the employment costs of all occupations working in transportation industries, including non-transportation industries. Employment costs of transportation occupations is the weighted average of the employment costs of all transportation occupations, including those working in non-transportation industries, such as truck drivers working for retail stores.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Employment Cost Trends, Public Query Data, available at http://www.bls.gov/ncs/ect/.