Productivity and Costs by Industry: Selected Service-Providing Industries, 2015

For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Wednesday, May 18, 2016                                         USDL-16-0988

Technical information: 	(202) 691-5618 
Media contact:          (202) 691-5902

                                    PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTS BY INDUSTRY:
                                 SELECTED SERVICE-PROVIDING INDUSTRIES, 2015

Labor productivity rose in 15 of 28 selected service-providing industries in 2015, the U.S. Bureau of 
Labor Statistics reported today. This was fewer than in 2014, when labor productivity increased in 20 of 28 
industries. In 2015 output increased in fewer industries than in 2014, while hours worked increased in 
more industries than in 2014.  

Unit labor costs declined in 10 industries in 2015. Each of the industries with declines in unit labor costs 
also recorded increases in productivity. Increases in labor productivity counter the impact of rising hourly 
compensation on unit labor costs facing employers.

Productivity and cost measures are published in this release for the first time for amusement parks and 
arcades, and for specialized freight trucking.

Trends in Labor Productivity in 2015

*	Labor productivity increased in 15 of 28 industries in 2015. Among those 
        with increasing productivity, output grew in all but two. Hours worked declined in 9 of the 
        28 industries.
*	Productivity gains of at least 8.0 percent occurred in two industries where output increases 
        coincided with declines in hours worked: wireless telecommunications carriers (26.5 
        percent) and amusement parks and arcades (8.0 percent).
*	Four industries recorded output gains of at least 3.0 percent but had productivity declines 
        because of larger increases in hours worked: truck, trailer, and RV rental and leasing (-5.6 
        percent), warehousing and storage (-4.4 percent), software publishers (-4.2 percent), and air 
        transportation (-0.3 percent).

Trends in Unit Labor Costs in 2015

*	Unit labor costs fell in 10 industries in 2015.
*	All unit labor cost declines occurred in industries where productivity rose. 
*	Conversely, each of the industries where productivity fell also recorded an increase in 
        unit labor costs. 
*	Hourly labor compensation rose in 19 of the 28 industries measured. 

Long Term Productivity Trends 

*	Productivity rose in 44 service-providing industries for the period 1987 to 2014. Median 
        productivity growth for all 57 industries was approximately 1.7 percent per year.
*	Output increased during this period in 43 industries, while hours worked increased in 34 
*	Productivity also increased in 37 of the 57 industries measured between 2007 and 2014, even 
        though the period saw a severe recession. However, only 28 industries had increases in output 
        and 17 experienced growth in hours worked.
*	Other specialized trucking, long-distance, and other specialized trucking, local, are published 
        for the first time in this release for 2002-2014. The first industry reported an increase in 
        productivity in 2014, while the latter had a productivity decline.      
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 *   -Additional industries and sectors                                                                        *
 *   -Detailed data series: indexes of productivity and related measures; rates of change; and levels          *
 *    of industry employment, hours worked, nominal value of production, and labor compensation	               *
 *   -Additional years and long-term data                                                                      *
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Last Modified Date: May 18, 2016