Wage, benefit, and compensation trends, manufacturing and private sectors, 1986–2017

Levels  of wages, benefits, and compensation, 2017 dollars Percent change
1986 2000 2007 2017 1986–2000 2000–07 2007–17 1986–2017
Manufacturing workers
W-2 wages $26.17 $26.96 $28.20 $30.52 3.0% 4.6% 8.2% 16.6%
Benefits $6.36 $6.63 $8.09 $9.14 4.3% 22.0% 13.0% 43.8%
Compensation $32.53 $33.59 $36.29 $39.66 3.3% 8.0% 9.3% 21.9%
Private-sector workers
W-2 wages $23.17 $23.49 $24.95 $26.53 1.4% 6.2% 6.3% 14.5%
Benefits $5.00 $4.99 $6.01 $6.58 0.0% 20.3% 9.5% 31.7%
Compensation $28.17 $28.48 $30.96 $33.11 1.1% 8.7% 7.0% 17.5%
Shares of compensation Percentage-point change
1986 2000 2007 2017 1986–2000 2000–07 2007–17 1986–2017
Manufacturing workers
W-2 wages 80.5% 80.3% 77.7% 77.0% -0.2% -2.6% -0.8% -3.5%
Benefits 19.5% 19.7% 22.3% 23.0% 0.2% 2.6% 0.8% 3.5%
Compensation markup 24.3% 24.6% 28.7% 29.9% 0.3% 4.1% 1.3% 5.7%
Private-sector workers
W-2 wages 82.3% 82.5% 80.6% 80.1% 0.2% -1.9% -0.5% -2.1%
Benefits 17.7% 17.5% 19.4% 19.9% -0.2% 1.9% 0.5% 2.1%
Compensation markup 21.6% 21.3% 24.1% 24.8% -0.3% 2.8% 0.7% 3.2%

Notes: W-2 wages includes the BLS-defined wage category plus paid leave and supplemental pay categories. Benefits include the remaining categories of pay: insurance, retirement, and payroll costs. The compensation markup is the ratio of compensation to W-2 wages.

Source: Analysis of Bureau of Labor Statistics Employer Costs for Employee Compensation data, March of each year

View the underlying data on epi.org.