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April 28, 2006
Compensation Costs Increase at Slightly Slower Pace

Compensation costs for the private sector rose 0.6 percent from December 2005 to March 2006, after increasing 0.7 percent in the prior quarter, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported.

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For state and local government workers, compensation costs increased 0.5 percent from December to March, slowing from the increase of 1.1 percent for the quarter ended in December.

Private industry workers wages and salaries increased 0.7 percent during the March 2006 quarter, compared with a 0.6 percent gain in the previous quarter. Wages and salaries in state and local government advanced 0.4 percent during the December to March period, moderating from the 1.0 percent increase in the prior quarter.

Private sector benefit costs rose 0.4 percent for the March quarter, following a 0.7 percent gain in the previous quarter. Benefit costs for state and local government workers increased 0.7 percent in the March quarter, moderating from the 1.5 percent gain in the December quarter.

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