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U.S. labor costs power ahead in third quarter as wages surge

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Reuters

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. labor costs increased by the most since 2001 as companies boosted wages and benefits amid a severe worker shortage, suggesting inflation could remain high for sometime. The Employment Cost Index, the broadest measure of labor costs, surged 1.3% last quarter after rising 0.7% in the April-June period, the Labor Department said on Friday. The largest gain since 2001 reflected an increase across industries. Labor costs powered ahead 3.7% on a year-on-year basis, the largest rise since the fourth quarter of 2004, after increasing 2.9% in the second quarter. “While wage …

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