Category Archives: Compensation

Hawaii’s Working Population: An Analysis by Industry 2012-2016

Source: Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism Research and Economic Analysis Division, April 2018

From the press release:
The Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT) released a report today, “Hawaii’s Working Population: An Analysis by Industry 2012-2016,” which shows the general demographic, social, and economic characteristics of Hawaii working population by industry.

“The report shows the structure of our industry from the employment perspective. The top two industries, Accommodation and Food Services and Retail Trade, are closely related to tourism and employed one fourth of our total working population,” said DBEDT Director Luis P. Salaveria. “It is encouraging that Hawaii employees in the Accommodation and Food Services sector were paid better than their counterparts in the nation.”

Hawaii’s average labor earnings and wages, in general, are lower than the U.S. average. Females made less income than males in almost all the industries. “The analysis in this report may be helpful for those planning to enter the labor market,” said Chief State Economist Dr. Eugene Tian “However, most of the statistics are averages for the industry combining all the occupations. We are working on another analysis looking at the characteristics of Hawaii’s working population by occupation.”….

Related:
PRICED OUT OF PARADISE
Source: Hawaii News Now, 2018
With our ongoing series, “Priced out of Paradise,” Hawaii News Now is exploring Hawaii’s high cost of living and why so many island families are struggling to make ends meet. Join the conversation on social media with the hashtag #HICostofLiving.

Report: In Honolulu, $40K salary now considered ‘very low income’
Source: Mileka Lincoln, Hawaii News Now, April 23, 2018

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has released its income limits for 2018 — a calculation that is used to determine who can qualify for affordable and subsidized housing programs, and also helps establish fair market rent. HUD income limits in Hawaii are increasing substantially — in some cases by more than 10 percent — as the cost of living jumps each year. This means more people are qualifying for public assistance through housing vouchers or Section 8 placement, but those options are still as limited as before. According to HUD, as of 2018, low income for a single person in Honolulu is someone making up to $65,350. Just a year ago, it was $58,600. That’s a nearly $7,000 increase from 2017.

Waiting — and Waiting– For Corporate Tax Cuts to Deliver Those Wage Hikes

Source: Manuel Madrid, American Prospect, April 13, 2018

Though if you’re a CEO or shareholder, the new tax cuts are the gift that keeps on giving. ….

…. It’s been nearly four months since the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act became law, and the good times continue to roll for shareholders and company executives. Corporate profitability is well on its way to hitting decade-long highs, and CEO pay, coming off of a record year in 2017, will be the cause of much champagne-popping. But if the new tax bill, which showered corporate America with an estimated $68 billion in savings, has been a party for Wall Street, folks on Main Street—the supposed primary beneficiaries of the tax-cutting bonanza, as Republicans told it—have yet to receive their invitations.

A new online database launched by Americans for Tax Fairness (ATF), a broad coalition of more than 400 groups championing progressive tax reform, tracks how corporations have responded to the new law. The ATF website, entitled “Trump Tax Cut Truths,” contains information on more than 800 companies, including the amount of tax savings those companies received along with details on planned bonuses, pay raises, and stock buybacks. The information is sourced from news articles, press releases, public corporate filings, independent analysis, and ATF research. ….

What to Do When Workers Hit the Top of Their Pay Range

Source: Joanne Sammer, HR Magazine, Vol. 63 no. 2, March 2018
(subscription required)

Consider offering creative incentives—and a bit of career counseling. ….

Just as there is a maximum amount that Stephen Curry can earn as a star point guard for the Golden State Warriors, there is a limit to how much Stephen Brown can make as Accountant I. That’s because both the National Basketball Association and the typical U.S. company put ceilings on the salaries they pay.

But while it’s safe to assume that Curry will be satisfied with his financial future even as he tops out of his range, Brown may be less enthused. Unless there’s an opening available for an Accountant II, there’s no obvious way for the second Stephen to continue to grow financially at his employer. That could lead him to feel stuck and, ultimately, to initiate his own trade—to another company.

Until there is more pressure to expand the money companies set aside to boost salaries, cost-of-living adjustments may not be enough to provide individuals like Brown with a significant pay increase. Of course, your organization needs to control salary growth, but don’t be penny-wise and pound-foolish by taking a rigid approach, losing top performers in the process, say compensation experts. Instead, address these situations with a mix of alternative reward solutions, proactive career discussions and, in some cases, evaluations of how closely pay is tied to the market. ​

This is especially critical today, as employees and job seekers have access to an unprecedented amount of pay-related information through social media and other online channels, and many are reading reports of companies raising pay in light of the corporate tax overhaul. An employer that appears to be limiting a worker’s earning power will likely struggle to hire and keep talented people, especially as the economy continues to perform well and the job market tightens. You need to be prepared to explain why a person’s pay may be limited after hitting the top of the pay range—and you must do it well…..

Will Corporate Tax Cuts Result in Higher Wages for U.S. Workers?

Source: Gordon Gray and Matthew Gardner, HR Magazine, Vol. 63 no. 3, April 2018
(subscription required)

Two economists debate the issue.

Gordon Gray: Yes. The benefits of the 2017 tax bill are just beginning. ….
Gordon Gray is director of fiscal policy at the American Action Forum in Washington, D.C.

Matthew Gardner: No. Trickle-down tax breaks will have little effect. ….
Matthew Gardner is a senior fellow at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy in Washington, D.C.

What Would You Do For A Raise? | 35% of Americans Would Give Up the Right to Vote

Source: Mike Brown, LendEDU, April 3, 2018

….But, just how far would the average worker go to get a bigger paycheck? Would they do something drastic like breakup with their significant other? How about something a little more watered down (for some at least) like giving up watching Game of Thrones? To gauge how far Americans would go to receive an immediate 10 percent raise in their annual wages or salaries, LendEDU asked 1,238 respondents a series of “would you rather” questions where they had to weigh making a steep sacrifice in order to get a nice pay bump…..

Related:
A Third of Americans Would Forfeit Their Voting Rights For a 10% Pay Raise, Says Study
Source: Jennifer Calfas, Time, April 5, 2018

More than a third of Americans would give up their right to vote for a 10% annual pay raise, according to a new survey.

Pause for a second to let that sink in.

The peculiar findings come from a survey conducted by LendEDU, an online student loan marketplace, that polled 1,238 working Americans. In exchange for the hypothetical pay bump, about 35% of these employees said they would sacrifice their voting rights for life. In addition, just over 9% of respondents said they would give up their children’s (or future children’s) right to vote for life for the make-believe raise.

Teachers Rise Up For Raises

Source: 1A, April 3, 2018
(audio)

The success of the teachers’ strike in West Virginia, which resulted in a 5 percent pay increase, has inspired a movement among educators across the nation. Teachers and their supporters have staged demonstrations in Oklahoma, Kentucky and Arizona, closing down some public schools in those states — and more strikes could be coming soon. Average annual wages for K-12 teachers range from $59,000 to $61,000 nationally, but many classroom educators in red states earn thousands less than the average. How are local governments addressing teachers’ demands? And how is the new national conversation over compensation altering our ideas about what a teacher is worth?

Related:
5 things to know about the teacher strike in Oklahoma
Source: Erin McHenry-Sorber, The Conversation, April 3, 2018

The Oklahoma teachers strike is about more than just pay, but rather a longstanding pattern of decline in funding for the state’s public schools.

The Gap: A Shortage of Affordable Homes

Source: Andrew Aurand, Dan Emmanuel, Diane Yentel, Ellen Errico, Marjorie Pang, National Low Income Housing Coalition, March 2018
About the Gap Report
Each year, the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) measures the availability of rental housing affordable to extremely low income households and other income groups. Based on the American Community Survey Public Use Microdata Sample (ACS PUMS), The Gap presents data on the affordable housing supply and housing cost burdens at the national, state, and metropolitan levels. This year’s report also examines the demographics, disability and work status, and other characteristics of extremely low income households most impacted by the national shortage of affordable and available rental housing.

Who are the Lowest Income Renters?
Of the 43.8 million renter households in the U.S., 11.2 million (more than one-quarter) have extremely low incomes at or below the poverty level or 30% of the area median income (AMI), whichever is higher. Extremely low income renters are more likely to be elderly or disabled or to have children than other renters. Nearly half (46%) of extremely low income renter households are elderly or disabled. Black and Hispanic renter households are more likely to be extremely low income than white renters. Thirty-five percent of the 8.5 million non-Hispanic black renter households and 29% of the 8.4 million Hispanic renter households are extremely low-income. In comparison, 21% of the 23.2 million non-Hispanic white renter households are extremely low income…..

Related:
Interactive map

Prices and Wages by Decade

Source: University of Missouri Library, 2018

Links to U. S. government documents listing retail prices for typical consumer purchases, and wages for common occupations.

All data is for the United States unless specifically indicated.

This guide points to government publications listing retail prices for common items or “necessities of life.” Prices for foods, articles of clothing, household items, appliances, hardware, fuel and other physical goods fall within the domain of this guide.  We included prices for other types of common expenditures as well: transportation, cars, homes, rent, utilities, and school tuition for example.  Here you will also find typical wages, salaries, hours and earnings for workers dating back to the 1700s.  Again, we point to official government publications almost exclusively.