Economist Mike Walden: The Boost in Benefits and Bonuses

This is Mary Walden with economist MW, welcoming you to the economic perspective.  Today’s program looks at the boost in benefits and bonuses.  Mike, one of the continuing puzzles in the economy is the lack of strong growth in wages and salaries, especially in an economy with low unemployment.  Is there a solution to this puzzle found by looking at other ways workers are being paid?

  1. Yes there is
  2. Workers are increasing seeing pay boosted not in their regular wage or salary, but in the form of benefits and bonuses
  3. The share of pay coming in the form of benefits and bonuses has almost doubled since 2014
  4. This year a big part has been bonuses based on the tax cuts
  5. But also see an increase in the provision of wellness programs, and bonuses related to helping new workers relocate or pay down on student loans
  6. Businesses like these because don’t have to be continued, and it’s something they can do to “stand out” during recruiting

And I’m Mary Walden for the Economic Perspective, an NC State Extension program from the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics