Thursday, May 02, 2013


[IWS] BLS: PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTS First Quarter 2013, Preliminary [2 May 2013]

IWS Documented News Service


Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor---------------------- Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau



PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTS First Quarter 2013, Preliminary [2 May 2013]


[full-text, 12 pages]


Supplemental Files Table of Contents



Nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased at a 0.7 percent annual

rate during the first quarter of 2013, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

reported today. The increase in productivity reflects increases of 2.5 percent

in output and 1.8 percent in hours worked. (All quarterly percent changes in

this release are seasonally adjusted annual rates.) From the first quarter of

2012 to the first quarter of 2013, productivity increased 0.9 percent as

output and hours worked increased 2.5 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively.

(See table A.)


Labor productivity, or output per hour, is calculated by dividing an index of

real output by an index of hours worked of all persons, including employees,

proprietors, and unpaid family workers.


Unit labor costs in nonfarm businesses increased 0.5 percent in the first

quarter of 2013, as an increase in hourly compensation was greater than the

increase in productivity. Unit labor costs rose 0.6 percent over the last four

quarters. (See table A.)


BLS defines unit labor costs as the ratio of hourly compensation to labor

productivity; increases in hourly compensation tend to increase unit labor

costs and increases in output per hour tend to reduce them.


Manufacturing sector productivity increased 3.8 percent in the first quarter

of 2013, as output grew 5.6 percent and hours rose 1.7 percent. Output growth

was robust in both manufacturing subsectors, while virtually all hours growth

occurred in durable manufacturing. Over the last four quarters, manufacturing

sector productivity increased 1.7 percent as output and hours worked rose 2.6

percent and 0.9 percent, respectively. Unit labor costs in manufacturing

decreased 0.5 percent in the first quarter of 2013 and increased 1.6 percent

from the same quarter a year ago. (See tables A and 3.)


AND MUCH MORE...including TABLES....




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