- Half of U.S. workers haven’t received a pay boost — either via a raise or a job change — in the past 12 months, according to findings from a December Bankrate poll.
- Of those who received a raise, 38% said the increase was based on performance. Thirty-one percent were promoted or received additional responsibilities and 26% received a cost-of-living increase.
- The stagnation has appeared despite low unemployment. "Typically, as the pool of available workers starts to thin, research suggests that employers will boost pay to recruit more," Bankrate said. "For much of the expansion, however, that hasn’t happened."
Employers have been slow to raise wages, fearing another recession. Pay increases have hovered around 3% in recent years and an August report from Willis Towers Watson (WTW) and Gallagher predicted more of the same for 2020.
Instead, employers will offer personalized benefits, bonuses and other variable compensation, the report said. "Despite an extremely tight labor market, most employers are either not willing or fiscally unable to increase their fixed costs across-the-board by bolstering their salary budgets," said Catherine Hartmann, WTW's North America rewards leader, in a statement releasing the findings.
ADP research has put wage growth slightly above others' findings at 4%; Ahu Yildirmaz, co-head of the ADP Research Institute, said in a media release that the tight labor market is forcing some employers to raise wages, especially in an effort to retain top talent.