Mean hourly compensation costs in selected countries, 1975 and 2007
July 14, 2010
Employer compensation costs for production workers in manufacturing increased between 1975 and 2007 in all countries included in a recent BLS study.
Because these compensation cost measures are nominal—not adjusted for inflation—the steady increase over time is attributed primarily to a rise in the overall price level.
Although nominal labor costs in U.S. dollars have risen across the board over the long term, trends in growth rates have varied considerably from country to country. The mean hourly compensation cost quadrupled in the United States, from $6.24 in 1975 to $25.27 in 2007, an average increase of 4.5 percent per year.
South Korea showed the largest percentage change in hourly compensation costs, increasing from $0.31 in 1975 to $16.02 in 2007—an average increase of approximately 13 percent per year. Conversely, compensation cost growth in Mexico was sluggish over the long term; the mean cost increased from $1.43 in 1975 to only $2.92 just over 30 years later—an average annual increase of 2.3 percent.
These data are from the International Labor Comparisons program. To learn more, see Compensation costs in manufacturing across industries and countries, 1975–2007 (PDF), in the June 2010 issue of the Monthly Labor Review. Production workers generally include those employees who are engaged in fabricating, assembly, and related activities.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Mean hourly compensation costs in selected countries, 1975 and 2007 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2010/ted_20100714.htm (visited August 29, 2016).
Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics
A look at healthcare spending, employment, pay, benefits, and prices
As one of the largest U.S. industries, healthcare is steadily growing to meet the needs of an increasing population with an increasing life expectancy. This Spotlight looks at how much people spend on healthcare, current and projected employment in the industry, employer-provided healthcare benefits, healthcare prices, and pay for workers in healthcare occupations.
Employment and Wages in Healthcare Occupations
Healthcare occupations are a significant percentage of U.S. employment. Some of the largest and highest paying occupations are in healthcare. This Spotlight examines employment and wages for healthcare occupations.
Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.