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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

U.S. Labor Costs Rise

WASHINGTON -- Despite tight labor markets almost everywhere in the United States, labor costs are rising so modestly that they are putting virtually no pressure on most firms to raise prices, according to a government report.

The U.S. Labor Department said Thursday that its employment cost index rose 0.4 percent in the first three months of the year, the smallest seasonally adjusted gain for any quarter since 1982, when the department began tracking figures on the current basis. Over the past 12 months, the ECI increased 3 percent, down from 3.7 percent for the year ended last September, which was the lowest reading in two years.