Slight decrease in labor productivity: report
ABJ - May 17 - Non-farm business sector labor productivity decreased at a 0.5 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 2.7 per cent in output and 3.2 per cent in hours worked. From the first quarter of 2011 to the first quarter of 2012, productivity increased 0.5 per cent as output and hours worked rose 2.8 per cent and 2.2 per cent, respectively.
Unit labor costs in non-farm businesses increased two per cent in the first quarter of 2012, while hourly compensation increased 1.5 per cent. Unit labor costs rose 2.1 per cent over the last four quarters.
Manufacturing sector productivity rose 5.9 per cent in the first quarter of 2012, as output grew 10.8 per cent and hours worked increased 4.6 per cent. The increases in productivity and output were the largest since the second quarter of 2010.
Over the last four quarters, manufacturing sector productivity increased 2.5 per cent. Unit labor costs in manufacturing fell 4.2 per cent in the first quarter of 2012 and decreased 1.3 per cent from the same quarter a year ago. Productivity increased 3.7 per cent in the fourth quarter of 2011, as output grew faster than hours worked.