Thursday, November 06, 2014


[IWS] BLS: PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTS - Third Quarter 2014, Preliminary [6 November 2014]

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


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PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTS - Third Quarter 2014, Preliminary [6 November 2014]


[full-text, 12 pages]


Supplemental Files Table of Contents



Nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased at a 2.0 percent annual

rate during the third quarter of 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

reported today, as output increased 4.4 percent and hours worked increased

2.3 percent. (All quarterly percent changes in this release are seasonally

adjusted annual rates.) From the third quarter of 2013 to the third quarter

of 2014, productivity rose 0.9 percent as output and hours worked increased

3.0 percent and 2.1 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 the nonfarm business sector rose 0.3 percent in the

third quarter of 2014, as a 2.3 percent increase in hourly compensation was

larger than the 2.0 percent increase in productivity. Unit labor costs

increased 2.4 percent over the last four quarters. (See tables A and 2.)


BLS calculates 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 3.2 percent in the third quarter

of 2014, as output increased 4.1 percent and hours worked increased 0.8

percent. In the durable goods manufacturing sector, productivity grew 4.2

percent, reflecting a 6.6 percent increase in output and a 2.3 percent

increase in hours. In nondurable goods industries, productivity grew 3.0

percent, as output increased 1.2 percent and hours worked fell 1.8 percent.

(See tables A, 3, 4, and 5.) Over the last four quarters, manufacturing

productivity increased 2.8 percent, as output increased 4.4 percent and

hours increased 1.5 percent. Unit labor costs in manufacturing decreased 0.7

percent in the third quarter of 2014 and increased 0.6 percent from the same

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


The concepts, sources, and methods used for the manufacturing output series

differ from those used in the business and nonfarm business output series;

these output measures are not directly comparable. See Technical Notes for a

more detailed explanation.


AND MORE...including TABLES....



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