Compensation costs, third quarter 2013

November 20, 2013

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 0.4 percent, seasonally adjusted, for the 3-month period ending September 2013, following a 0.5-percent increase for the 3 months ending in June. Wages and salaries (which make up about 70 percent of compensation costs) increased 0.3 percent in the September quarter, similar to the 0.4-percent increase for the previous quarter. Benefits (which make up the remaining 30 percent of compensation costs) increased 0.7 percent after increasing 0.4 percent for the 3-month period ending in June.

3-month percent change in the Employment Cost Index for civilian workers, seasonally adjusted, September 2011–September 2013
QuarterTotal compensationWages and salariesTotal benefits

September 2011

0.30.40.2

December 2011

0.40.30.7

March 2012

0.50.50.6

June 2012

0.50.40.7

September 2012

0.40.30.5

December 2012

0.40.30.6

March 2013

0.50.50.6

June 2013

0.50.40.4

September 2013

0.40.30.7

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 1.9 percent for the 12-month period ending September 2013, unchanged from the 12-month period ending in September 2012. Wages and salaries increased 1.6 percent for the current 12-month period.  In September 2012, the 12-month increase was 1.7 percent. Benefit costs increased 2.2 percent for the 12-month period ending September 2013, compared with the 2.4-percent increase for the 12-month period ending September 2012.

Compensation costs for private industry workers increased 1.9 percent over the 12-month period ending September 2013, the same increase as in September 2012. Wages and salaries increased 1.8 percent for the year ending in September 2013, the same increase as the period one year ago. The increase in the cost of benefits was 2.0 percent for the 12-month period ending September 2013, compared with a 2.2-percent increase in the period ending in September 2012. Health benefit costs increased 2.7 percent over the period, compared with 2.3 percent for 12-month period ending September 2012.

These data are from the BLS Employment Cost Trends program. To learn more, see "Employment Cost Index — September 2013," (HTML) (PDF) news release USDL‑13‑2192. Compensation costs (also known as employment costs) include wages, salaries, and employer costs for employee benefits. Civilian workers include workers in the private nonfarm economy excluding households and those in the public sector excluding the federal government.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Editor's Desk, Compensation costs, third quarter 2013 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2013/ted_20131120.htm (visited September 16, 2014).

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