Labor costs in the auto industry
April 27, 2011
Compensation costs for blue-collar workers in the automobile industry exceed those of many blue-collar workers in other manufacturing industries.
Compensation costs for auto workers were among the highest of any manufacturing industry in 2009, despite the trends of recent years in which nominal auto industry compensation costs have held steady or declined (except from 2007 to 2008), while compensation costs in other manufacturing industries have continued to climb. In real terms, private auto industry compensation costs have been falling since 2004.
Compensation costs can be broken into two categories: wages and benefits. In the auto industry, upward pressure on wage costs has been offset by downward pressure on benefit costs. In both real and nominal terms, benefit costs have been falling for auto manufacturers in recent years (except from 2007 to 2008), while benefit costs have been steady for other private industry manufacturers.
These data are from the Compensation Cost Trends program. To learn more, see "Auto Industry Labor Costs in Perspective" in the April 2011 issue of Compensation and Working Conditions Online. In the source article, “blue-collar workers” include the following occupations: protective service occupations; food preparation and serving related occupations; building and grounds cleaning and maintenance occupations; personal care and service occupations; farming, fishing, and forestry occupations; construction and extraction occupations; installation, maintenance, and repair occupations; production occupations; transportation and material moving occupations.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Labor costs in the auto industry on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2011/ted_20110427.htm (visited December 08, 2016).
Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics
Workplace injuries and illnesses and employer costs for workers’ compensation
Workplace injury and illness data and the costs to employers for workers’ compensation in natural resources, construction, and maintenance occupations.
A look at the future of the U.S. labor force to 2060
Projected long-term trends in the growth, size, and composition of the labor force.
Union membership in the United States
Historical trends in union membership among employed wage and salary workers; union membership by a variety of demographic characteristics.
A look at healthcare spending, employment, pay, benefits, and prices
Spending on healthcare, current and projected employment in the industry, employer-provided healthcare benefits, healthcare prices, and pay for workers in healthcare occupations.
Self-employment in the United States
Trends in self-employment by various demographic and socioeconomic characteristics, including both the unincorporated and the incorporated self-employed, as well as data on paid employees who work for the self-employed.