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Employer costs for employee compensation averaged $36.63 per hour worked in September 2018

December 21, 2018

Employer costs for employee compensation averaged $36.63 per hour worked in September 2018. Wages and salaries averaged $25.03 per hour worked and accounted for 68.3 percent of these costs. Benefit costs averaged $11.60 and accounted for the remaining 31.7 percent. Employer compensation costs for private industry workers average $34.53 per hour worked, compared with an average of $50.03 for state and local government workers.

Employer costs per hour worked for employee compensation, September 2018
Compensation Civilian workers Private industry workers State and local government workers

Total compensation

$36.63 $34.53 $50.03

Wages and salaries

$25.03 $24.06 $31.23

Total benefits

$11.60 $10.48 $18.80

Insurance

$3.17 $2.74 $5.93

Legally required

$2.67 $2.66 $2.77

Paid leave

$2.59 $2.41 $3.76

Retirement and savings

$1.95 $1.35 $5.82

Supplemental pay

$1.21 $1.32 $0.51

In September 2018, private industry employer costs for paid leave benefits averaged $2.41 per hour worked or 7.0 percent of total compensation, supplemental pay averaged $1.32 or 3.8 percent, insurance benefits averaged $2.74 or 7.9 percent, retirement and savings costs averaged $1.35 or 3.9 percent, and legally required benefits averaged $2.66 per hour worked or 7.7 percent.

For state and local government workers in September 2018, employers spent $5.82 per hour worked, or 11.6 percent of total compensation for retirement and savings benefits. Insurance benefit costs averaged $5.93 per hour, or 11.9 percent of total compensation. The average cost for paid leave was $3.76 per hour worked, or 7.5 percent of total compensation.

These data are from the Employment Cost Trends program. To learn more, see "Employer Costs for Employee Compensation — September 2018." Also see charts of the latest Employer Costs for Employee Compensation data.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Employer costs for employee compensation averaged $36.63 per hour worked in September 2018 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2018/employer-costs-for-employee-compensation-averaged-36-point-63-per-hour-worked-in-september-2018.htm (visited October 23, 2020).

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