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Employment Cost Index

The Employment Cost Index (ECI) measures the change in the hourly labor cost to employers over time. The ECI uses a fixed “basket” of labor to produce a pure cost change, free from the effects of workers moving between occupations and industries and includes both the cost of wages and salaries and the cost of benefits.


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Latest Numbers

TOTAL COMPENSATION: 3-month % change (SA)

Civilian workers 1.2% in 1st Qtr of 2024 Historical Data

Private industry workers 1.1% in 1st Qtr of 2024 Historical Data

State and local government workers 1.3% in 1st Qtr of 2024 Historical Data

TOTAL COMPENSATION: 12-month % change (NSA)

Civilian workers 4.2% in 1st Qtr of 2024 Historical Data

Private industry workers 4.1% in 1st Qtr of 2024 Historical Data

State and local government workers 4.8% in 1st Qtr of 2024 Historical Data

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How the Employment Cost Index Is Used?

The Employment Cost Index, or ECI, measures changes in the cost of employees to employers over time. In the private sector, business owners and human resources professionals can use the ECI to make decisions about pay adjustments to help them stay competitive. In the public sector, the Federal Reserve and others use the ECI to gauge the health of the labor market, adjust contracts, and research the labor market. read more »

News Releases

Compensation costs up 1.2% Dec 2023 to Mar 2024 and up 4.2% over the year ending Mar 2024


Compensation costs increased 1.2 percent for civilian workers, seasonally adjusted, from December 2023 to March 2024. Over the year, total compensation rose 4.2 percent, wages and salaries rose 4.4 percent, and benefit costs rose 3.7 percent.
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Next Release

The Employment Cost Index (ECI) for June 2024 is scheduled to be released on July 31, 2024 at 8:30 A.M. Eastern Time.


Monthly Labor Review

Monthly Labor Review article image

Removing workers’ compensation costs from the National Compensation Survey

The implications of removing an item from the National Compensation Survey. read more »

The Economics Daily

The Economics Daily article image

Compensation costs up 4.5 percent from June 2022 to June 2023

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 4.5 percent for the 12 months ending June 2023, compared with an increase of 5.1 percent for the year ending in June 2022. read more »

Spotlight on Statistics

Spotlight on Statistics article image

Union Membership, Activity, and Compensation in 2022

In 2022, 10.1 percent of workers in the United States belonged to a union. This Spotlight on Statistics focuses on union membership, strike activity, and compensation in 2022. read more »