2018 Economic Calendar
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Employment Cost Index  
Released On 4/27/2018 8:30:00 AM For Q1:18
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
ECI - Q/Q change0.6 %0.7 %0.6 % to 0.8 %0.8 %
ECI - Y/Y change2.6 %2.7 %

The isolated hints of emerging price pressures now include employer costs. The employment cost index rose 0.8 percent in the first quarter which is the high end of expectations. The year-on-year rate is up 1 tenth to 2.7 percent for the highest reading of the last 10 years.

Wages & salaries, not benefits, are the leading source of pressure, up 0.9 percent in the quarter for an annual 2.7 percent increase. But benefits are also up, climbing 0.7 percent for 2.6 percent year-on-year.

This report is a red flag for next week's FOMC meeting and will certainly be cited, along perhaps with recent acceleration in average hourly warnings, as an indication of tightness in the labor market, conditions that point to the risk of wage-push inflation.

Consensus Outlook
Modest acceleration is expected for the employment cost index which is expected to rise 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter compared to 0.6 percent in the third quarter. This report has been at expansion highs with wages and benefits both showing similar gains.

A measure of total employee compensation costs, including wages and salaries as well as benefits. The employment cost index (ECI) is the broadest measure of labor costs.  Why Investors Care
Federal Reserve policy makers monitor wage data closely especially the employment cost index. Components of the index are wages & salaries and also benefits where health insurance premiums are a dominant factor.
Data Source: Haver Analytics

2018 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/314/277/3110/31
Release For: Q4:17Q1:18Q2:18Q3:18

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