New year salary increase
Worker pay to rise in 2014 but not by much.
This is always welcome news, you could be getting a raise next year.
But it might not be as much as you think you deserve.
US employers are expected to be more generous when it comes to giving out pay raises next year, but not by much.
A survey by Mercer shows employers anticipate increasing salaries by 2.9% on average in 2014.
That's slightly better than the 2.8% they gave this year.
But it's a far cry from the 3.5% we saw in the middle part of the last decade.
Why are employers being so stingy?
Part of it is because the unemployment rate is still high.
It currently stands at 7.6%... With 11.8 million americans out of a job.
That means managers in many industries have the upper-hand in hiring, and can easily recruit and retain workers, without raising salaries.
It's also because: many companies simply have less available money, due to the higher costs of funding retirement and healthcare benefits.
While a consultant with Mercer said that these slow increases are "The new normal," the firm acknowledges that pay will have to go up eventually, especially to retain top performers.
About 77% of information technology firms say they've used spot cash rewards to hold onto workers.
Signing bonuses and milestone incentives are also popular.
But that's not the norm across all industries or all pay grades.
And, with increases this slow, it's still tough for a lot of Americans to make ends meet.