Economic News Release

Employment Cost Index news release text


TRANSMISSION OF MATERIAL IN THIS RELEASE IS EMBARGOED UNTIL                                USDL-16-0159
8:30 A.M. (EST) FRIDAY, JANUARY 29, 2016


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                              EMPLOYMENT COST INDEX - DECEMBER 2015


Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 0.6 percent, seasonally adjusted, for the 3-month 
period ending in December 2015, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Wages and 
salaries (which make up about 70 percent of compensation costs) increased 0.6 percent, and benefits 
(which make up the remaining 30 percent of compensation) increased 0.7 percent. (See chart 1 and tables 
A, 1, 2, and 3.)
 
Civilian Workers

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 2.0 percent for the 12-month period ending in 
December 2015. In December 2014, compensation costs increased 2.2 percent. Wages and salaries 
increased 2.1 percent for the current 12-month period, unchanged from the 12-month period ending in 
December 2014. Benefit costs increased 1.7 percent for the 12-month period ending in December 2015. 
In December 2014, the increase was 2.6 percent. (See chart 2 and tables A, 4, 8, and 12.)

Private Industry Workers

Compensation costs for private industry workers increased 1.9 percent over the year, slowing from the 
December 2014 increase of 2.3 percent. Wages and salaries increased 2.1 percent for the current 12-
month period. In December 2014, the increase was 2.2 percent. The increase in the cost of benefits was 
1.3 percent for the 12-month period ending in December 2015, lower than December 2014 when the 
increase was 2.5 percent. (See charts 3 and 4 and tables A, 5, 9, and 12.)
 
Employer costs for health benefits increased 3.0 percent over the year. In December 2014, the increase 
was 2.4 percent. (For further information, see www.bls.gov/web/eci/echealth.pdf.)

Among occupational groups, compensation cost increases for private industry workers for the 12-month 
period ending in December 2015 ranged from 1.4 percent for natural resources, construction, and 
maintenance occupations to 2.6 percent for production, transportation, and material moving occupations. 
(See table 5.)

Among industry supersectors, compensation cost changes for private industry workers for the current 
12-month period ranged from -1.4 percent for information to +2.6 percent for other services, except 
public administration. (See table 5.)

State and Local Government Workers

Compensation costs for state and local government workers increased 2.5 percent for the 12-month 
period ending in December 2015. In December 2014, the increase was 2.0 percent. Wages and salaries 
increased 1.8 percent for the 12-month period ending in December 2015, and in December 2014 the 
increase was 1.6 percent. Benefit costs increased 3.5 percent in December 2015, higher than in 
December 2014 when the increase was 2.9 percent. (See chart 5 and tables A, 7, 11, and 12.)

The Employment Cost Index for March 2016 is scheduled to be released on 
Friday, April 29, 2016, at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).

Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request— 
Voice phone:  (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service:  (800) 877-8339.

BLS news releases, including the ECI, are available through an e-mail subscription service at: 
www.bls.gov/bls/list.htm.


______________________________________________________________________________________________

Table A.  Major series of the Employment Cost Index
(Percent change)

Category                     3-month,                               12-month,
                       seasonally adjusted                   not seasonally adjusted
                         Sept.      Dec.            Dec.      Mar.      June     Sept.    Dec.
                         2015       2015            2014      2015      2015     2015     2015
______________________________________________________________________________________________
   CIVILIAN WORKERS[1]

Compensation[2]          0.6        0.6             2.2       2.6       2.0      2.0      2.0
Wages and salaries       0.6        0.6             2.1       2.6       2.1      2.1      2.1
Benefits                 0.5        0.7             2.6       2.7       1.8      1.8      1.7

   PRIVATE INDUSTRY

Compensation[2]          0.6        0.5             2.3       2.8       1.9      1.9      1.9
Wages and salaries       0.7        0.6             2.2       2.8       2.2      2.1      2.1
Benefits                 0.5        0.4             2.5       2.6       1.4      1.4      1.3

   STATE AND LOCAL
     GOVERNMENT

Compensation[2]          0.6        0.8             2.0       2.1       2.2      2.3      2.5
Wages and salaries       0.3        0.4             1.6       1.8       1.9      1.8      1.8
Benefits                 0.7        1.4             2.9       2.8       2.7      3.0      3.5
______________________________________________________________________________________________

[1] Includes private industry and State and local government.
[2] Includes wages and salaries and benefits.

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Last Modified Date: January 29, 2016
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