Worker Compensation Costs Rising At Slower Pace

Labor Department report on slight growth in cost to hire and retain employees suggests jobs climate is easing inflation pressures.

WASHINGTON (AP) β€” Employers' costs to hire and retain workers grew at a slightly slower pace in the summer, suggesting that a somewhat softer β€” but still solid β€” jobs climate is easing inflation pressures.
 
The Labor Department reported Wednesday that compensation costs β€” including wages, salaries and benefits β€” rose by 0.8 percent in the July-to-September quarter. That was down a bit from a 0.9 percent increase posted in the second quarter.
 
The third-quarter increase was a little weaker than the 0.9 percent rise in compensation costs expected by economists.
 
With wage inflation pressures easing, that gives the Federal Reserve leeway to lower a key interest rate again as an insurance policy to protect the economy from a deepening housing slump.
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