Growth in Employer Costs Slows in 4Q 2001

January 31, 2002 ( - The cost of employing workers grew over the fourth quarter - but at a slower rate than in the previous quarter, according to data released by the Department of Labor.

The Employment Cost Index, a measure of the changes in what employers pay in wages, salaries and employee benefits, increased by 0.9% over the final three months of last year.

However, the data also show that on a year on year basis, in 2001, employment costs increased at 4.1%, the same rate as recorded in 2000.

Over the fourth quarter of 2001:

  • benefit costs rose by 1.2%, down from the 1.6% increase in the previous quarter
  • wages and salaries grew by 0.8%, the same as in the third quarter.