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WAGES AND BENEFITS -- FIRST THREE QUARTERS 1992

 WAGES AND BENEFITS -- FIRST THREE QUARTERS 1992
 WASHINGTON, Oct. 15 /PRNewswire/ -- Continuing a steady decline


that surfaced earlier this year, the all-industries median first-year wage increase under contracts negotiated during the first three quarters of 1992 fell six-tenths of a percentage point below the median bargained during the first nine months of 1991.
 The overall median first-year increase in first three quarters 1992 was 3.4 percent (40 cents an hour), compared with 4 percent (48.2 cents) for the same period in 1991. The second-year median was 3.1 percent, down from 3.5 percent for the first three quarters of 1991, while the third-year median remained the same in 1992 and in 1991 -- 3.2 percent.
 A geographic analysis showed that median increases were lower in all regions but the Midwest, showing a 0.3 percentage point rise from 3.7 percent in the first nine months of 1991 to 4 percent (47.6 cents an hour) in first three quarters 1992. New England showed the steepest median decline, falling 1.8 percent to 2.5 percent (31.4 cents), followed by the West, falling 1.7 percent to 3.1 percent (38.3 cents).
 The manufacturing first-year median in contracts settled in first nine months 1992 was one percent lower than the increase bargained in the same period of 1991 -- dropping from 3.5 percent to 2.5 percent. All manufacturing medians, with the exception of paper industry settlements, fell in the first three quarters of 1992. The non- manufacturing (excluding construction) first-year median increase in first nine months 1992 was 4 percent, compared with 4.5 percent in first three quarters 1991. Only two non-manufacturing (excluding construction) industry medians in the first nine months of 1992 rose above the medians reported for the same period in 1991.
 Lump-sum payment provisions were found in 10 percent of contracts reported in first three quarters 1992, down from 11 percent in first nine months 1991 and a sharp decrease from the 42 percent reported in first quarter 1988 when these pay systems were first tabulated.
 The analysis was based on 698 collective bargaining agreements covering more than 1.4 million workers reported in "Collective Bargaining Negotiations and Contracts" during the first nine months of 1992.
 Pension plans were altered in 54 percent of the 500 contracts itemizing benefit changes. In the 136 contracts increasing benefits, monthly payments by end of term were to average 23.75 per year of service. Increases in monthly benefits over term were to average $3.79 per year's service under 132 contracts specifying pension amounts.
 Substance abuse provisions appearing in this year's first three quarters included establishment of committees to create and implement drug abuse policies, employee assistance programs offering prevention and intervention services, expanded random testing language and paid time off for required drug and alcohol tests.
 A wide variety of family-related provisions were found in settlements bargained in the first three quarters of 1992. Often mentioned were leave provisions relating to child- or elder-care, or to care for an ill family member. Several settlements contained options for full-time employees to return to work on a part-time basis for three months following dependent care leave and/or provided 50 percent company-paid coverage for the second six months of unpaid child- or elder-care leave. Another innovative clause called for training and tuition allowances for laid-off workers and their spouses.
 Contract reports analyzed appeared in the Table of Current Contract Settlements in "CBNC," a specialized information service published in Washington by the Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. Contract reports weight increases equally and cover 50 or more workers. Public sector settlements also were excluded.
 NOTE: Information from "CBNC's" collective bargaining database is available. In addition to compilations of wage and benefit terms in contract settlements, the databank includes a bibliography of more than 4,000 contracts and analyses of patterns in a sample of 400 agreements. Reports customized to meet individual requirements can be prepared for a fee within 24 hours by calling BNA PLUS toll-free at 800-452-7773 nationwide or 202-452-4323 in Washington.
 -0- 10/15/92
 /CONTACT: Emily Pilk of The Bureau of National Affairs, 202-452-4985/ CO: The Bureau of National Affairs ST: District of Columbia IN: PUB SU:


IH -- DC007 -- 0322 10/15/92 10:23 EDT
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Date:Oct 15, 1992
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