2004 Bargaining Yields Average First-Year Increase of 3.8 Percent
Construction-industry collective bargaining negotiations completed in 2004 produced an average first-year increase in wages and fringe benefits of $1.36 or 3.8 percent, according to the Construction Labor Research Council’s (CLRC’s) annual report on settlements. This compares with an average of $1.42 or 4.3 percent in 2003, and $1.37 or 4.1 percent in 2002.
It is “at the low end of the 3.8 to 4.5 percent range of first-year averages since 1999” and matches the 1999 average, reports CLRC. The average second-year increase in newly negotiated multi-year agreements was $1.50 or 3.9 percent, the average third-year increase was $1.50 or 3.7 percent, and the average fourth-year increase was $1.53 or 3.7 percent.
The average first-year increase was “greatly influenced” by geography, says CLRC. As in 2003, the average first-year increase negotiated in the Middle Atlantic Region ($2.05 or 4.8 percent) was significantly higher than most regions, but relatively light bargaining activity in that region dampened the affect on the national average. Reported increases in every region were at the same level or below those of the previous year.
As typical of recent years, average increases did not vary substantially by craft, except as reflected by the geographic disbursement of settlements. The Bricklayers negotiated the highest percent average first-year increase at 4.4 percent, and the Electricians negotiated the lowest at 2.8 percent.
For a copy of CLRC’s full report, click here.
AGC is a founding member of CLRC and supports its efforts to gather and report useful and accurate labor-related information for contractors. All AGC chapters are reminded to send new wage and fringe benefit information directly to CLRC promptly upon contract settlement. Such information may be delivered via e-mail to CLRC@erols.com, via fax to (202) 467-5683, or via regular mail to 1915 Eye Street, NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC, 20006.
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