BNA forecasts that wages in the private sector will begin to grow by early 2012.

The tax and accounting research publisher’s preliminary Wage Trend Indicator increased to 98.32 for the third quarter from 98.21 in the second quarter.

The rate of annual pay increases for wage and salary workers is expected to accelerate to around 2.0 percent from the 1.7 percent gain posted in the second quarter of 2011, based on the Department of Labor’s latest employment cost index.

“The economy is still inching forward, although there is more uncertainty and risk surrounding the outlook than there was a month ago,” said economist Kathryn Kobe, a consultant who maintains and helped develop BNA's WTI database. “The latest WTI continues to signal that wage increases should pick up, based on current labor market conditions.”

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