Labor Bureau reports Q1 productivity and costs
ABJ - June 12 - Non-farm business sector labor productivity decreased at a 0.9 per cent annual rate during the first quarter of 2012, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The decline in productivity reflects increases of 2.4 per cent in output and 3.3 per cent in hours worked. From the first quarter of 2011 to the first quarter of 2012, productivity increased 0.4 per cent as output and hours worked rose 2.7 per cent and 2.2 per cent, respectively.
Unit labor costs in non-farm businesses increased 1.3 per cent in the first quarter of 2012, while hourly compensation increased 0.4 per cent. Unit labor costs rose 0.9 per cent over the last four quarters.
Manufacturing sector productivity rose 5.2 per cent in the first quarter of 2012, as output grew 10 per cent and hours worked increased 4.6 per cent. Over the last four quarters, manufacturing sector productivity increased 2.3 per cent, as output increased 5.3 per cent and hours rose 2.9 per cent – the largest four-quarter increase in hours worked since the first quarter of 1997 (three per cent).
Manufacturing hourly compensation declined 0.7 per cent from the first quarter of 2011 to the first quarter of 2012 – the first four-quarter decline in the measure.