The much discussed shortage of farm labor has apparently caused agriculture employers to raise compensation in order to increase output.
According to a report from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, farm operators paid their hired workers an average wage of $11.91 per hour during the April 2013 reference week, up 4 percent from a year earlier. Field workers received an average of $10.92 per hour, up 4 percent from a year earlier. Livestock workers earned $11.46, up 51 cents. The field and livestock worker combined wage rate, at $11.10 per hour, was up 48 cents from a year earlier. Hired laborers worked an average of 40.3 hours during the April 2013 reference week, compared with 39.2 hours a year earlier.
Despite the increase in wages and working hours farm profits are expected to rise by 13%.