Employment Cost Index Summary

NEWS RELEASE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

TRANSMISSION OF MATERIAL IN THIS RELEASE IS EMBARGOED UNTIL                                      USDL-19-0728
8:30 a.m. (EDT) Tuesday, April 30, 2019


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					  EMPLOYMENT COST INDEX – March 2019
					  
(NOTE: This news release was reissued on April 30, 2019. Tables A, 1, 2, and 3 were corrected to 
show revised seasonally adjusted data for previous quarters.)

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 0.7 percent, seasonally adjusted, for the 3-month 
period ending in March 2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Wages and 
salaries (which make up about 70 percent of compensation costs) increased 0.7 percent and benefit 
costs (which  make up the remaining 30 percent of compensation) also increased 0.7 percent from 
December 2018. (See tables A, 1, 2, and 3.)

Civilian Workers 

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 2.8 percent for the 12-month period ending in
March 2019 compared with a compensation costs increase of 2.7 percent in March 2018. Wages and
salaries increased 2.9 percent for the 12- month period ending in March 2019 and increased 2.7
percent for the 12-month period ending in March 2018. Benefit costs increased 2.6 percent for the
12-month period ending in March 2019. In March 2018, the increase was also 2.6 percent.
(See tables A, 4, 8, and 12.)

Private Industry Workers

Compensation costs for private industry workers increased 2.8 percent over the year, the same
increase as in March 2018. Wages and salaries increased 3.0 percent for the 12-month period ending
in March 2019 and increased 2.9 percent in March 2018. The cost of benefits rose 2.4 percent for the
12-month period ending in March 2019 and increased 2.5 percent in March 2018.
(See tables A, 5, 9, and 12.)

Employer costs for health benefits increased 1.9 percent for the 12-month period ending in March
2019. (For further information, see chart 3 and www.bls.gov/web/eci/echealth.pdf.)

Among occupational groups, compensation cost increases for private industry workers for the 12-month
period ending in March 2019 ranged from 2.3 percent for management, professional, and related
occupations to 3.4 percent for service occupations. (See table 5.)

Among industry supersectors, compensation cost increases for private industry workers for the 12-
month period ending in March 2019 ranged from 2.2 percent for manufacturing to 4.8 percent for
information. (See table 5.)

State and Local Government Workers

Compensation costs for state and local government workers increased 3.0 percent for the 12-month
period ending in March 2019. In March 2018, the increase was 2.2 percent. Wages and salaries
increased 2.5 percent for the 12-month period ending in March 2019, compared with 1.8 percent a year
ago. Benefit costs increased 3.6 percent for the 12-month period ending in March 2019. The prior
year increase was 3.0 percent. (See tables A, 7, 11, and 12.)


Table A. Major series of the Employment Cost Index [Percent change]
Category 3-month,
seasonally adjusted
12-month, not seasonally adjusted
Dec.
2018
Mar.
2019
Mar.
2018
Jun.
2018
Sep.
2018
Dec.
2018
Mar.
2019

Civilian workers(1)

Compensation(2)

0.7 0.7 2.7 2.8 2.8 2.9 2.8

Wages and salaries

0.7 0.7 2.7 2.8 2.9 3.1 2.9

Benefits

0.7 0.7 2.6 2.9 2.6 2.8 2.6

Private industry

Compensation(2)

0.7 0.7 2.8 2.9 2.9 3.0 2.8

Wages and salaries

0.7 0.7 2.9 2.9 3.1 3.1 3.0

Benefits

0.5 0.5 2.5 2.8 2.5 2.6 2.4

State and local government

Compensation(2)

0.7 0.7 2.2 2.3 2.5 2.6 3.0

Wages and salaries

0.6 0.6 1.8 1.9 2.3 2.4 2.5

Benefits

0.9 1.0 3.0 3.1 3.1 3.1 3.6

Footnotes
(1) Includes private industry and state and local government.
(2) Includes wages and salaries and benefits.

  
The Employment Cost Index for June 2019 is scheduled for release on July 31, 2019, at 8:30 a.m.
(EDT).

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request—
Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.

BLS news releases, including the Employment Cost Index, are available through an email subscription
service at www.bls.gov/bls/list.htm.

Videos and information graphics explaining the Employment Cost Index and how it is used are
available at www.bls.gov/eci/videos.htm.

Highlights of recent National Compensation Survey data are available in The Economics Daily at
www.bls.gov/opub/ted/national-compensation-survey.htm.

An overview of available BLS compensation measures and an interactive guide on choosing among them,
are available at the BLS Commissioner’s Corner on “Making it Easier to Find Data on Pay and
Benefits” at blogs.bls.gov/blog/2018/10/24/making-it-easier-to-find-data-on-pay-and-benefits.

Detailed information on seasonal factors for the 2019 reference year and the revisions of historical
seasonally adjusted data for the most recent 5 years can be found at www.bls.gov/ncs/ect/
ectsfact.htm.

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Last Modified Date: April 30, 2019