US employment costs surged more than expected in Q3. Up 0.8% QoQ (equals the biggest quarterly jump since Q4 2017), as increases in private wages and salaries accelerated, perhaps signaling that workers are gaining leverage in a tightening labor market.
Wages & Salaries rose 0.9% QoQ (+2.9% QoQ) as benefits slowed (+0.8% QoQ from +0.9% in Q2, and +2.6% YoY vs +2.9% in Q2).
On a year-over-year basis, Q3 is up 2.8%, the biggest annual jump since Q3 2008...
Government wages rose 2.3% YoY vs Private Workers 3.1% YoY gain (the most since 2008).
As Bloomberg notes, the government’s quarterly ECI reading -- which covers employer- paid taxes such as Social Security and Medicare in addition to the cost of wages and benefits -- offers a glimpse at how American workers are being compensated.
The latest reading shows momentum in worker compensation ahead of October wage figures due in Friday's monthly employment report.
With the world's equity market bulls hoping for weak economic data to give The Fed an excuse to pause its 'normalization', this data crushes that hope. Is good news bad news? We shall see.