Economic News Release

Employment Cost Index news release text


TRANSMISSION OF MATERIAL IN THIS RELEASE IS EMBARGOED UNTIL                                USDL-16-0823
8:30 A.M. (EDT) FRIDAY, APRIL 29, 2016


Technical information:   (202) 691-6199  ncsinfo@bls.gov  www.bls.gov/ect
Media contact:           (202) 691-5902  pressoffice@bls.gov


                                EMPLOYMENT COST INDEX - MARCH 2016


Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 0.6 percent, seasonally adjusted, for the 3-month 
period ending in March 2016, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Wages and salaries 
(which make up about 70 percent of compensation costs) increased 0.7 percent, and benefits (which 
make up the remaining 30 percent of compensation) increased 0.5 percent. (See chart 1 and tables A, 1, 
2, and 3.)
 
Civilian Workers

Compensation costs for civilian workers increased 1.9 percent for the 12-month period ending in March 
2016. In March 2015, compensation costs increased 2.6 percent. Wages and salaries increased 
2.0 percent for the current 12-month period, and increased 2.6 percent for the 12-month period ending in 
March 2015. Benefit costs increased 1.7 percent for the 12-month period ending in March 2016.  In 
March 2015, the increase was 2.7 percent. (See chart 2 and tables A, 4, 8, and 12.)

Private Industry Workers

Compensation costs for private industry workers increased 1.8 percent over the year, lower than the 
March 2015 increase of 2.8 percent. Wages and salaries increased 2.0 percent for the current 12-month 
period. In March 2015, the increase was 2.8 percent. The increase in the cost of benefits was 1.2 percent 
for the 12-month period ending in March 2016, significantly lower than March 2015 when the increase 
was 2.6 percent. (See charts 3 and 4 and tables A, 5, 9, and 12.)

Employer costs for health benefits increased 3.3 percent for the 12-month period ending in March 2016, 
and increased 2.5 percent in March 2015. (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 March 2016 ranged from 1.4 percent for sales and office occupations to 2.5 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 -1.7 percent for information to +2.8 percent for trade, transportation and 
utilities. (See table 5.)

State and Local Government Workers

Compensation costs for state and local government workers increased 2.4 percent for the 12-month 
period ending in March 2016. In March 2015, the increase was 2.1 percent. Wages and salaries 
increased 1.8 percent for the 12-month period ending in March 2016, the same increase as the 12-month 
period ending in March 2015. Benefit costs increased 3.5 percent for the 12-month period ending in 
March 2016, a higher rate than in the prior year when the increase was 2.8 percent. (See chart 5 and 
tables A, 7, 11, and 12.)
__________________________


The Employment Cost Index for June 2016 is scheduled to be released on 
Friday, July 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
                         Dec.       Mar.            Mar.      June      Sept.    Dec.     Mar.
                         2015       2016            2015      2015      2015     2015     2016
______________________________________________________________________________________________
   CIVILIAN WORKERS[1]

Compensation[2]          0.5        0.6             2.6       2.0       2.0      2.0      1.9
Wages and salaries       0.5        0.7             2.6       2.1       2.1      2.1      2.0
Benefits                 0.6        0.5             2.7       1.8       1.8      1.7      1.7

   PRIVATE INDUSTRY

Compensation[2]          0.5        0.6             2.8       1.9       1.9      1.9      1.8
Wages and salaries       0.6        0.7             2.8       2.2       2.1      2.1      2.0
Benefits                 0.4        0.5             2.6       1.4       1.4      1.3      1.2

   STATE AND LOCAL
     GOVERNMENT

Compensation[2]          0.8        0.5             2.1       2.2       2.3      2.5      2.4
Wages and salaries       0.5        0.4             1.8       1.9       1.8      1.8      1.8
Benefits                 1.2        0.6             2.8       2.7       3.0      3.5      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: April 29, 2016
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