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Here's how much extra pay salaried workers are due for their extra day of work on Leap Day this year.

By MSN Money Partner Feb 29, 2012 2:13PM

This post comes from Danielle Kurtzleben at partner site U.S. News & World Report.


USNews on MSN MoneyLeap year brings an extra day to get things done, try something new and work for free.


While hourly workers are given an extra day for earnings this year, salaried workers will get the same pay as a regular, 365-day year.


So how much money are salaried American workers missing out on when they put in that extra shift?


There are 261 weekdays in 2012 with the inclusion of leap day. (There are also holidays, but many companies consider those "paid" holidays, and some workers have to work those days, anyway.) So, for example, dividing a reporter's average yearly salary of $43,780 by 260 (leap day minus one) reveals that an extra day of that reporter's work is worth 168 extra dollars. That reporter's editor, meanwhile, is missing out on 228 extra dollars this year, given an average salary of $59,340.


In contrast, bigwigs like New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Whole Foods CEO John Mackey are owed an extra 0.4 cents since they accept annual salaries of only $1. (Post continues below.)

Below is a list of workers and, if salaried on an annual basis, how much they are missing out on due to Leap Day:

  • Secretaries and administrative assistants (excluding legal, medical and executive): $123
  • Reporter: $168
  • Clergy: $186
  • High school teacher (except special and career/technical education): $215
  • Editor: $228
  • Registered nurse: $260
  • Network and computer systems administrator: $278
  • Airline pilot: $443
  • Doctor (general practitioner): $669
  • Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg: $82.
  • Speaker of the House John Boehner: $860
  • Surgeon: $867
  • President Barack Obama: $1,538
  • Lloyd Blankfein, CEO of Goldman Sachs: $7,692 (reflects 2011 $2 million base salary only, not total $9 million disclosed 2011 pay package).

More on U.S. News & World Report and MSN Money:

Feb 29, 2012 5:09PM
We still get our weekly salary. There is not an extra day in the week. Companies take your annual salary and divide it by 52 to get your weekly gross. We get that every week. In essence, we do get paid the extra day. My paycheck this week is not a day short.
Non Leap Year
52000 (example) / 52 weeks = 1000 per week or 142.85 / day.
Jan 1 is a Monday (example)
Dec 31 is a Monday 
Dec 31 goes on paycheck for Dec 31 - Jan 6.
Paid 52 weeks + 1 day = 52142.85
Leap Year
Jan 1 is a Monday
Dec 31 is a Tuesday
Dec 30 & 31 goes on paycheck for Dec 30 - Jan 5.
Paid 52 weeks + 2 days - 52285.70
Feb 29, 2012 6:27PM

Today is still a Wednesday, is it not?  I am a salaried employee, and I get paid for 52 weeks per year, Monday through Friday weeks. So whether today is the 29th of the month, or the 1st of the month, it is still just another Hump-Day like any other Wednesday.


I have to say that these folks who come up with such ridiculous ideas have way too much time on their hands and ought to get REAL jobs.

Feb 29, 2012 5:11PM
This story is idiotic.  I don't know anyone who has a pay period of a full year, so the extra day is irrelevant in relation to days worked vs. days paid.  Salaried people are usually paid bi-weekly or weekly, the number of days in the year don't matter.  Example, if you get paid weekly every Friday your probably paid for the previous weeks 5 days work, Monday to Friday.  Just because this is a leap year does not mean you worked 6 days this week and are only getting paid for 5, you worked 5 and you will get paid for 5.  End of story.  So how do I know I'm right, because the liberal left wing Obama lovers would be rioting in the streets if, God forbid, they worked an extra day and did not get paid for it!    
Feb 29, 2012 5:14PM
Very poor table after article.  A Supreme court justice should be $822. Secretaries and assistants would be hourly pay as they have no manager responsiblilites and are not exempt. School teachers are not shorted any pay as they still teach the same number of school days per year. Most registered nurses are hourly.
Feb 29, 2012 4:49PM

The people who are on salary do not work 40 hour work weeks like hourly employees.


I had a job that went from 45 to 50 hours when I was paid hourly to working 65 to 70 hours when I was on salary. The extra $50 a week did not make up for the extra hours.

Feb 29, 2012 5:51PM
This story is so much BS, it's ridiculous.  Salaried people aren't paid on the basis of a 365-day year... they are paid on the basis of a year.  Mathematically, the numbers only come out 'right' if a year had 364 days.  The fact of the matter is that these blogger/writers have nothing more to write about and so either recycle old articles or, the case here, invent an issue.  If they were really astute, they'd ask why renters have to pay a month's rent for a 28-day (or, every four years, 29-day) February... those rallying to the cause could surely point out that landlords are building up treasure chests of money from people paying for an extra 2 days of rent they shouldn't have to....
Feb 29, 2012 5:34PM

I agree with those who say the story is all wrong. The story focuses on the number of the day in February (29), but we all continue to live and work by the same seven-day work week of Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday.


Remove the calendar numbers and you'll see another day hasn't been added to this week, so no one is working an extra day.


Being Feb. 29 really matters to those born on this day. And I wish them a very Happy Birthday (dude, party like its 2008)!


Feb 29, 2012 6:43PM
Many of the articles I've read lately leads me to believe that there is a shortage of editors.
Feb 29, 2012 6:45PM
Can the opposite argument also be easily made? For all of those salaried folks (including myself) who get paid monthly or semi-monthly, you get paid the same for February as the other months, even though it is ALWAYS the shortest month. So for all of us who find that we are still working on the last day of February, CONGRATS for getting paid without having to be there on the 30th or 31st. The glass really is half full.... See, I can put spin on things too...
Feb 29, 2012 6:27PM
I feel a little bit of my brain died after reading this article, if I read it a few more times I could be a writer.
Feb 29, 2012 5:08PM
shoulda called out sick today. too late now.
Feb 29, 2012 5:52PM
The author of this article is trying to create a controversy that isn't there.  I like to point out that salaried employees get paid no matter what.  That means in all the other years, when there are only 28 days in February, they are bringing in more then the hourly workers who are missing a day.   On the other hand, salaried worked get no pay bump for all those weekends and long working days.
Feb 29, 2012 6:16PM
Nobody worked an extra day this year.There were 261 working days this year for a total of 2088 hours. There were 260 working days last year for a total of 2080 hours. The previous 2 years yielded 261 working days. ,and the last leap year had 262 working days for a total of 2096 hours. My co gave us a floating holiday last leap year. We made out last year by working one less day.
Feb 29, 2012 5:11PM
Salaried employees work for a salary; they do not get paid by the hour, even if one were to divide the salary by hours worked. Some weeks one may work a little more; other weeks maybe less.  That's the salary; live with it, and be thankful for a job. Isn't there a Biblical passage dealing with workers being hired for a "penny a day" ?  Some worked longer and others less, but they worked for a penny a day.
Feb 29, 2012 6:06PM

My teaching contract is very specific on the number of days I get paid for working.  I am not "owed" any more for a leap year than any other year. 

FYI - those weeks we don't work over Christmas and spring break, we don't get paid for - they are not contracted days.

Another poorly thought out article by MSNmoney.

Feb 29, 2012 4:20PM
Making cars/gas/TVs are all done by robots now.  This is because its so easy to program a robot to do repetitious menial work that its cheaper than hiring a person.

The jobs that are listed all require certain trade skills and experience, and all of them are jobs that need the immense parallel and spatial processing of the human brain in case "the plan" goes awry and emergency training has to kick in.

Airplanes?  Yeah, let's keep pilots for emergencies, good idea.

Hospitals?  I think Nurses and Doctors are probably a good thing to keep there in case some medication doesn't work properly or there is an unknown diagnosis that needs to be treated.

Computer related controller?  Well, you can automate it, but you can't guarantee it won't screw up so you have to keep someone around to fix the things that weren't properly programmed or automated.

Teachers?  Yeah, being able to shift from topic to topic is something that requires humans, and judgment calls are made all the time regarding discipline, helping weak students, challenging advanced students, etc...

Clergy?  They have to do their standard preaching, helping, hypocrisy.  Robots are very bad at that kind of stuff.

Government officials?  Someone has to make laws, judge them, execute them, enforce them, take money under the table from special interests, and have a coke party with hookers.
Feb 29, 2012 4:52PM

Giovan...I work for a manufacturing company here in the US. YESS..there is still manufacturing done here. Not assembly line robot style work. But real hand made products that we sell to the public.


Few people take pride or are willing to pay the price for American made products. Look at your TV, your DVD, and maybe even your car. That's why this country is such a mess now.

Feb 29, 2012 6:10PM

Teachers work the same number of teaching days every year in our local systems.  Most RN's are hourly.  Surgeons bill out an extra days work, so don't tell me they aren't making a percentage of that.  Employees that are on salary typically work all kinds of hours and are paid accordingly. Average that one day that they work over the four years and see what you get. 

Why does anyone think they are OWED anything for doing their job at a rate they negotiated?  Why would you even want to consider that O'Bama was losing out on $1538 for 1 single day when that is more than most people make in a couple of weeks? Ridiculous.

Feb 29, 2012 6:40PM

@mikeantny lays it out nicely below but here's the additional gotcha: if you are paid weekly or bi-weekly (common practice for US companies) you will still get paid and will, in most years, gross more than your salary because the calendar doesn't have exactly 364 days/52 weeks/260 work days.


If you are paid monthly or semi-monthly (less common but not that unusual in the US), then you in fact will earn the same amount of money this month (with 21 work days) that you did in Feb 2011 (20 work days).


The bottom line is this: nobody negotiates their salary and says they are not working Feb 29th without extra pay.  It's not a secret that this extra day shows up every leap year.


Though not relevant to the mathematics of this discussion, it bears repeating that a salaried employee will, in reality, never work exactly 8.00 hrs per day, 5 days per week, for 52 weeks per year.  It just doesn't happen.


Happy March eve!


Feb 29, 2012 5:43PM
The basis for the article is erroneous.  Salaried people are already working an uncertain amount any particular year because there are not 364 days in a year.  Because of this, there will not always be 104 weekend days in each year.  Some years will have an extra workday, some an extra weekend.  What about if 2012 had 105 weekend days? then it would all have worked out.
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