Compensation costs increased in December 2012

February 06, 2013

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 1.9 percent for the 12-month period ending December 2012, essentially unchanged from the December 2011 increase of 2.0 percent. Wages and salaries increased 1.7 percent for the current 12-month period. In December 2011 the increase was 1.4 percent. Benefit costs increased 2.5 percent for the 12-month period ending December 2012, down from the December 2011 increase, which was 3.2 percent.

Employment Cost Index, 12-month percent change, not seasonally adjusted, civilian workers, December 2009–December 2012
 Total compensationWages and salariesTotal benefits

December 2009

1.41.51.5

March 2010

1.71.52.2

June 2010

1.91.62.5

September 2010

1.91.52.8

December 2010

2.01.62.9

March 2011

2.01.63.0

June 2011

2.21.63.6

September 2011

2.01.63.2

December 2011

2.01.43.2

March 2012

1.91.72.7

June 2012

1.71.72.1

September 2012

2.01.72.6

December 2012

1.91.72.5

Compensation costs for private industry workers also increased 1.9 percent over the year. In December 2011 the increase was 2.2 percent. Wages and salaries increased 1.7 percent for the current 12-month period, essentially unchanged from the 12-month period ending December 2011, for which the change was 1.6 percent. The increase in the cost of benefits was 2.2 percent for the 12-month period ending December 2012, down from the December 2011 increase of 3.6 percent. Employer costs for health benefits increased 2.8 percent over the year.

Among occupational groups, compensation cost increases for private industry workers for the 12-month period ending December 2012 ranged from 1.7 percent for natural resources, construction, and maintenance occupations; production, transportation, and material moving occupations; and service occupations to 2.0 percent for management, professional, and related occupations; and sales and office occupations.

These data are from the BLS Employment Cost Trends program. To learn more, see "Employment Cost Index — December 2012," (HTML) (PDF) news release USDL‑13‑0143. 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 increased in December 2012 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2013/ted_20130206.htm (visited September 18, 2014).

OF INTEREST

Three recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics