Category Archives: Compensation

PHI State Data Center

Source: PHI (Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute), September 2012

From the blog post:
PHI has updated its State Data Center using the most recent wage, health insurance, and employment data available on the direct-care workforce in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

The newly updated resource now features six revised charts for each state based on PHI’s analyses of the latest wage and employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2011 and U.S. Census Bureau health insurance and public-assistance data for 2010.

The effect of pension accounting rules on public-private pay comparisons

Source: Andrew G. Biggs, Jason Richwine, ABA Journal of Labor and Employment Law, Volume 27, Number 2, Winter 2012
(scroll down)

From the summary:
….Because of the well-known tendency for public employers to be more generous with benefits than with wages, any analysis that attempts to settle the “overpaid” or “underpaid” question must include all forms of compensation in the comparison. However, this article is not an all-inclusive analysis. Instead, our goal is to correct a significant error in many existing public-private comparisons. Simply put, it is incorrect to assume that the amount that state and local governments set aside for pension financing is equivalent to the “pension compensation” that public employees receive. In fact, because of accounting differences between the public and private sectors, public defined benefit pension plans contribute far less for each dollar of future pension benefits than private plans do, potentially skewing comparisons of overall compensation….

Why Do Women Still Earn Less Than Men? Analyzing the Search for High-paying Jobs

Source: Wharton, August 29, 2012

“Why do women continue to earn less money than men — approximately 20% less, according to some estimates — and what can be done about it? At least half the pay gap reflects the fact that women tend to work in different kinds of occupations and industries than men, a phenomenon known as “gender segregation.” Understanding the causes of that gender segregation is a key part of any attempt to address the pay differential. Wharton management professor Matthew Bidwell and Roxana Barbulescu, a management professor at McGill University in Montreal, set out to understand the causes of gender segregation by taking a different approach than studies that typically look at variances in the kinds of jobs that men and women choose, or at the decisions made by employers during the job application process. Bidwell and Barbulescu opted instead to look at job applicants themselves to determine whether the decisions they make during their job search process have a significant impact on which offer they accept. Their results are presented in a paper titled, Do Women Choose Different Jobs from Men? Mechanisms of Application Segregation in the Market for Managerial Workers, forthcoming in the journal Organization Science.”

Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2011

Source: Carmen DeNavas-Walt, Bernadette D. Proctor, Jessica C. Smith, U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Reports, P60-243, September 2012

From the press release:
The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that in 2011, median household income declined, the poverty rate was not statistically different from the previous year and the percentage of people without health insurance coverage decreased.

Real median household income in the United States in 2011 was $50,054, a 1.5 percent decline from the 2010 median and the second consecutive annual drop. The nation’s official poverty rate in 2011 was 15.0 percent, with 46.2 million people in poverty. After three consecutive years of increases, neither the poverty rate nor the number of people in poverty were statistically different from the 2010 estimates. The number of people without health insurance coverage declined from 50.0 million in 2010 to 48.6 million in 2011, as did the percentage without coverage – from 16.3 percent in 2010 to 15.7 percent in 2011.
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Tables & Figures
Detailed Tables
Historical Tables
Source and Accuracy

Consumer Perspectives on Quality Home Care

Source: National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (Consumer Voice), September 2012

From the press release:
Consumers want to remain in their homes as they age and/or as disability requires them to seek assistance, and they believe increased funding for in-home services and better pay and benefits for direct care workers are necessary to make that possible. These are among the findings of a report released today by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care (Consumer Voice).

The State of Working America, 12th Edition

Source: Lawrence Mishel, Josh Bivens, Elise Gould, and Heidi Shierholz. Economic Policy Institute, September 2012

From the press release:
Low- and middle-income workers and their families would have had far better income growth over the past 30 years if economic policies had not directed the fruits of economic growth to the highest-income Americans, a new Economic Policy Institute book, “The State of Working America, 12th Edition” finds. For example, had there been no growth in income disparities since 1979, annual income for a middle-income household would have been $88,875 in 2007, $18,897 higher than the $69,978 it actually was. The median household lost wealth between 1983 and 2010 and had just $57,000 in net worth in 2010, rather than the $119,000 it would have had if wealth had grown equally across all households over this period….

…”The State of Working America, 12th Edition” explains that economic policies, including policymakers’ actions and failures to act, have undercut the ability of workers to benefit from economic growth in the United States. Its primary findings include:
– America’s vast middle class has suffered a “lost decade” and faces the threat of another…
– Income and wage inequality have risen sharply over the last 30 years….
– Rising inequality is the major cause of wage stagnation for workers and of the failure of low- and middle-income families to appropriately benefit from growth….
– Economic policies caused increased inequality of wages and incomes….
– Claims that growing inequality has not hurt middle-income families are flawed….
Inequalities persist by race and gender….

…”The State of Working America, 12th Edition” includes new and compelling data on:
Income, Mobility, Wages, Jobs, Wealth, Poverty…

An overview of U.S. occupational employment and wages in 2011

Source: Audrey Watson, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Beyond the Numbers, Vol. 1, no. 6, July2012

A substantial share of U.S. employment in May 2011 was concentrated in a relatively small number of occupations. Just 10 occupations made up more than 20 percent of total employment, and the 20 largest occupations made up nearly one-third of employment–more than 41 million jobs. Most of these large occupations had below-average wages, as did most of the occupations with the highest job gains and losses between May 2007 and May 2011. Growth in the healthcare industry helped to shape employment gains in individual occupations, while construction and production occupations were concentrated in shrinking industries. Although the overall occupational structure of the U.S. economy generally reflected that of the private sector, education and protective service occupations were more prevalent in the public sector, particularly in local government.

This issue of Beyond the Numbers uses data from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) program to provide an overview of U.S. occupational employment and wages in May 2011. The first section presents employment and wage data for wage and salary workers in the largest U.S. occupations and selected occupational groups. The subsequent sections highlight occupations with the highest job gains and losses between May 2007 and May 2011, occupations prevalent in growing and shrinking industries, and occupational employment comparisons between the public and private sector.

Payday for payers

Source: Beth Kutscher, Modern Healthcare, Vol. 42 no. 33, August 13, 2012
(subscription required)

Compensation of the top execs at investor-owned insurers outpaced that of the leaders at hospitals and specialty care…Despite last year’s uncertainty about the future of the reform law, healthcare executives took home more money than those in any other sector on the S&P 500, with insurance execs topping the list….
…For the third year running, the highest paid executive among the three sectors was Stephen Hemsley, president and CEO of UnitedHealth Group, Minneapolis, who earned $42.2 million…. Tenet president and CEO Trevor Fetter…came in second on the list of hospital operators, earning $10.7 million…
Keeping executive compensation in check
Source: Ashok Selvam Modern Healthcare, Vol. 42 no. 33, August 13, 2012
(subscription required)

Ongoing push for transparency and links between pay and performance continue to drive trends…Establishing criteria for executive pay in the healthcare sector is difficult enough, but hospital boards continue to face added pressure for increased transparency in the process.

Executive Excess 2012: The CEO Hands in Uncle Sam's Pocket

Source: Sarah Anderson, Chuck Collins, Scott Klinger, Sam Pizzigati, Institute for Policy Studies, August 16, 2012

From the summary:
…Our nation’s tax code has become a powerful enabler of bloated CEO pay. Some tax rules on the books today essentially encourage corporations to compensate their executives at unconscionably higher multiples of what their average workers are paid.

Other rules let executives who run major corporations routinely reduce their corporate tax bills. The fewer dollars these corporations pay in taxes, the more robust their eventual earnings and the higher the “performance-based” pay for the CEOs who produce them.

In effect, we’re rewarding corporate executives for gaming the tax system. Our tax code is helping the CEOs of our nation’s most prosperous corporations pick Uncle Sam’s pocket.

In this latest Institute for Policy Studies Executive Excess annual report, our 19th consecutive, we take a close look at the most lucrative tax incentives and subsidies behind bloated CEO pay and highlight those executives who have reaped the highest rewards from tax code provisions that actively encourage outrageously disproportionate executive pay.

We also identify the top executives who have benefited the most from what have become known as “the Bush tax cuts”–the reductions in federal income tax rates on top-bracket, capital gains, and dividend income enacted in 2001 and 2003.

Among our findings:

Of last year’s 100 highest-paid U.S. corporate chief executives, 26 took home more in CEO pay than their companies paid in federal income taxes, up from the 25 we noted in last year’s analysis. Seven firms made the list in both 2011 and 2010.
– The CEOs of these 26 firms received $20.4 million in average total compensation last year. That’s a 23 percent increase over the average for last year’s list of 2010’s tax dodging executives
– The four most direct tax subsidies for excessive executive pay cost taxpayers an estimated $14.4 billion per year–$46 for every American man, woman, and child. That amount could also cover the annual cost of hiring 211,732 elementary-school teachers or creating 241,593 clean-energy jobs.
– CEOs have benefited enormously from the Bush tax cuts for upper-income taxpayers. Last year, 57 CEOs saved more than $1 million on their personal income tax bills, thanks to these Bush-era cuts.