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August 27, 2003
What Was the Cost of Compensation in June?
In June 2003, employer costs for employee compensation for civilian workers in private industry and state and local government in the United States averaged $24.19 per hour worked, the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics reported yesterday. Wages and salaries, which averaged $17.35, accounted for 71.7 percent of these costs, while benefits, which averaged $6.84, accounted for the remaining 28.3 percent.

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Health insurance has risen from $1.52 per hour worked and 6.6 percent of total compensation in June 2002, to $1.69 per hour and 7.0 percent in June 2003.

Legally required benefits, including Social Security, Medicare, unemployment insurance, and workers' compensation, averaged $1.93 per hour (8.0 percent of total compensation), representing the largest non-wage employer cost.

Employer costs for paid-leave benefits (vacations, holidays, sick leave, and other leave) averaged $1.63 (6.7 percent); life, health, and disability insurance benefits averaged $1.81 (7.5 percent); and retirement and savings benefits averaged 86 cents (3.6 percent) per hour worked.

In June 2003, private industry employer compensation costs averaged $22.61 per hour worked. Wages and salaries averaged $16.31 per hour (72.1 percent), while benefits averaged $6.30 (27.9 percent.) Health insurance has risen from $1.31 per hour worked and 6.0 percent of total compensation in June 2002, to $1.45 per hour and 6.4 percent in June 2003.

Employer costs for paid leave averaged $1.46 per hour worked (6.5 percent), supplemental pay averaged 64 cents (2.8 percent), insurance benefits averaged $1.57 (6.9 percent), retirement and savings averaged 67 cents (3.0 percent), and legally required benefits averaged $1.93 (8.5 percent) per hour worked.

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