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Benefits in businesses with 500 or more workers were 35 percent of total compensation in June 2019

September 20, 2019

In June 2019, benefits costs at private business establishments with fewer than 50 workers averaged $7.08 per hour worked (25.4 percent of total compensation) for benefits, compared with $17.52 per hour worked (35.1 percent of total compensation) for establishments with 500 or more workers. Regardless of establishment size, average benefits costs were higher and were a larger share of total compensation in goods-producing establishments than in service-providing establishments.

Employer costs for employee compensation for private industry workers by establishment size and industry group, June 2019
Establishment size Total compensation(1) Wages and salaries Total benefits Paid leave Supplemental pay Insurance Retirement and savings Legally required benefits
Percent Cost Percent Cost Percent Cost Percent Cost Percent Cost Percent Cost Percent Cost Percent Cost

All workers

1–49 workers

100.0% $27.87 74.6% $20.79 25.4% $7.08 5.9% $1.65 2.4% $0.66 6.2% $1.74 2.4% $0.68 8.4% $2.34

50–99 workers

100.0 30.33 71.9 21.81 28.1 8.52 6.5 1.96 2.5 0.77 7.8 2.35 3.1 0.95 8.2 2.49

100–499 workers

100.0 35.64 69.0 24.60 31.0 11.04 7.4 2.62 3.3 1.16 8.8 3.12 4.0 1.42 7.6 2.72

500 workers or more

100.0 49.90 64.9 32.37 35.1 17.52 8.8 4.37 4.5 2.27 9.5 4.75 5.6 2.77 6.7 3.37

Goods-producing(2)

1–49 workers

100.0 32.12 72.1 23.16 27.9 8.96 4.7 1.52 3.2 1.04 6.9 2.21 3.1 1.01 9.9 3.19

50–99 workers

100.0 36.03 67.7 24.38 32.3 11.65 5.6 2.02 3.4 1.24 10.1 3.63 4.2 1.53 9.0 3.23

100–499 workers

100.0 40.99 66.4 27.20 33.6 13.79 6.8 2.78 4.1 1.69 9.8 4.03 4.7 1.92 8.2 3.36

500 workers or more

100.0 53.68 62.1 33.34 37.9 20.34 8.0 4.28 5.8 3.11 10.4 5.57 6.8 3.64 7.0 3.74

Service-providing(3)

1-49 workers

100.0 27.20 75.1 20.42 24.9 6.79 6.2 1.67 2.2 0.61 6.1 1.67 2.3 0.63 8.1 2.21

50-99 workers

100.0 29.12 73.0 21.26 27.0 7.86 6.7 1.95 2.3 0.67 7.1 2.08 2.8 0.83 8.0 2.33

100-499 workers

100.0 34.24 69.9 23.92 30.1 10.32 7.5 2.58 3.0 1.02 8.4 2.88 3.8 1.29 7.5 2.55

500 workers or more

100.0 48.99 65.6 32.14 34.4 16.84 9.0 4.39 4.2 2.06 9.3 4.55 5.2 2.57 6.7 3.28

Footnotes:
(1) Includes costs for wages and salaries and benefits.
(2) Includes mining, construction, and manufacturing. The agriculture, forestry, farming, and hunting sector is excluded.
(3)  Includes utilities; wholesale trade; retail trade; transportation and warehousing; information; finance and insurance; real estate and rental and leasing; professional and technical services; management of companies and enterprises; administrative and waste services; educational services; health care and social assistance; arts, entertainment and recreation; accommodation and food services; and other services, except public administration.

Business establishments with fewer than 50 workers averaged $0.68 per hour worked (2.4 percent of total compensation) for retirement and savings benefits in June 2019, compared with $2.77 (5.6 percent) for those with 500 or more employees. Regardless of establishment size, average benefits costs for insurance were higher and were a larger share of total compensation in goods-producing establishments than in service-providing establishments.

These data are from the Employment Cost Trends program. To learn more, see "Employer Costs for Employee Compensation — June 2019." We also have more charts on employer costs for employee compensation.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Benefits in businesses with 500 or more workers were 35 percent of total compensation in June 2019 on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2019/benefits-in-businesses-with-500-or-more-workers-were-35-percent-of-total-compensation-in-june-2019.htm (visited October 28, 2020).

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