Employment Costs Post Moderate Second Quarter Gain

July 31, 2008 7:04:09 AM PDT
Wages and benefits paid to U.S. workers rose by a moderate amount in the spring that should not set off any inflation concerns at the Federal Reserve. The Labor Department reported Thursday that employment costs for civilian workers rose by 0.7 percent in the April-June quarter, matching the gain in the first three months of the year.

Both of those quarterly increases were the lowest in two years, since wages and benefits rose by 0.6 percent in the first quarter of 2006 and provided further evidence that the weakening labor market is keeping a lid on wage pressures.