Productivity and Costs, First Quarter 2017, Revised


Transmission of material in this release is embargoed until       USDL 17-0767
8:30 a.m. (EDT) Monday, June 5, 2017

Technical information: (202) 691-5606    dprweb@bls.gov   www.bls.gov/lpc
Media contact:         (202) 691-5902    PressOffice@bls.gov



                         PRODUCTIVITY AND COSTS
                      First Quarter 2017, Revised
                     
Nonfarm business sector labor productivity was unchanged during the first 
quarter of 2017, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, as both 
output and hours worked increased 1.7 percent. (All quarterly percent changes 
in this release are seasonally adjusted annual rates.) From the first quarter 
of 2016 to the first quarter of 2017, productivity increased 1.2 percent, 
reflecting a 2.5-percent increase in output and a 1.3-percent increase in 
hours worked. (See table A1.) 

Labor productivity, or output per hour, is calculated by dividing an index of 
real output by an index of hours worked by all persons, including employees, 
proprietors, and unpaid family workers. Measures released today were based on 
more recent source data than were available for the preliminary report.

Unit labor costs in the nonfarm business sector increased 2.2 percent in the 
first quarter of 2017, reflecting a 2.2-percent increase in hourly 
compensation; productivity was unchanged. Unit labor costs increased 1.1 
percent over the last four quarters. (See tables A1 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 labor productivity increased 0.5 percent in the first 
quarter of 2017, as output increased 2.6 percent and hours worked increased 
2.1 percent. Output per hour decreased 0.7 percent in the durable goods 
manufacturing sector and increased 2.7 percent in the nondurable goods 
sector. Over the last four quarters, manufacturing sector productivity 
increased 0.3 percent, as output increased 0.9 percent and hours worked 
increased 0.6 percent. (See tables A1, 3, 4 and 5.)  Unit labor costs in 
manufacturing increased 2.4 percent in the first quarter of 2017 and rose 2.9 
percent from the same quarter a year ago. 

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 the Technical Notes 
for a more detailed explanation.

Preliminary first-quarter 2017 measures were announced today for the 
nonfinancial corporate sector. Productivity decreased 1.5 percent in the 
first quarter of 2017 and decreased 0.1 percent over the last four quarters. 
Unit profits of nonfinancial corporations fell at a 6.6 percent annual rate 
in the first quarter of 2017 and fell 6.8 percent over the last four 
quarters. (See tables A2 and 6.) 

Revised measures                

Table B1 presents previous and revised productivity and related measures 
for the business, nonfarm business, and manufacturing sectors for the 
first quarter of 2017. 

In the first quarter of 2017, nonfarm business productivity was unchanged, 
rather than falling 0.6 percent as reported May 4, due to a 0.7-percentage 
point upward revision to output; hours worked were revised up 0.1 
percentage point. Unit labor costs were revised down--due primarily to the 
upward revision to productivity--and increased 2.2 percent. In the 
manufacturing sector, productivity was revised up 0.1 percentage point and 
hourly compensation was revised up 0.4 percentage point, resulting in a 0.3-
percentage point upward revision to unit labor costs.  

Table B2 shows previous and revised productivity and related measures for 
the business, nonfarm business, manufacturing, and nonfinancial corporate 
sectors for the fourth quarter of 2016. 

In the fourth quarter of 2016, labor productivity in the business, nonfarm 
business, and manufacturing sectors increased at the same rates reported May 
4. In the nonfarm business sector, hourly compensation was revised down, and 
decreased 3.0 percent, in contrast to the previously published estimate of a 
3.1 percent increase. As a result, unit labor costs fell 4.6 percent in the 
fourth quarter of 2016, rather than increasing 1.3 percent. In the 
manufacturing sector, a downward revision to hourly compensation also led 
directly to a downward revision to unit labor costs, which declined 3.4 
percent in the fourth quarter of 2016 rather than increasing 2.2 percent as 
previously published.  

In the nonfinancial corporate sector, productivity fell 4.2 percent in the 
fourth quarter of 2016 rather than declining 1.0 percent as previously 
reported, due solely to a downward revision to output. Annual average 
productivity increased 0.4 percent from 2015 to 2016, slightly less than the 
0.6-percent increase reported May 4. Unit profits of nonfinancial 
corporations fell 15.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2016, rather than the 
decline of 17.9 percent reported May 4. (See table 6.)

Complete annual and quarterly data series can be found on the Productivity 
and Costs home page: www.bls.gov/lpc/#data.
______________  






The preliminary Productivity and Costs news release for second-quarter 2017 
is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, August 9, 2017 at 8:30 a.m. (EDT).




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Table A1. Labor productivity growth and related measures - revised first-quarter 2017
(percent change from previous quarter at annual rate and from same quarter a year ago)

                                                Labor                   Hours    Hourly         Real hourly    Unit labor
Sector                  Percent change from:    productivity   Output   worked   compensation   compensation   costs
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Nonfarm business        Previous quarter           0.0          1.7      1.7        2.2            -0.9           2.2
                        A year ago                 1.2          2.5      1.3        2.3            -0.3           1.1

Business                Previous quarter          -1.0          1.1      2.2        1.6            -1.5           2.7
                        A year ago                 1.2          2.4      1.2        2.3            -0.3           1.1

Manufacturing           Previous quarter           0.5          2.6      2.1        2.9            -0.3           2.4
                        A year ago                 0.3          0.9      0.6        3.2             0.6           2.9

 Durable                Previous quarter          -0.7          2.9      3.6        1.7            -1.4           2.4
 manufacturing          A year ago                 0.9          1.5      0.6        3.6             0.9           2.6           
                        
 Nondurable             Previous quarter           2.7          2.3     -0.4        4.9             1.7           2.1
 manufacturing          A year ago                -0.5          0.2      0.7        2.5            -0.1           3.0
                        
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Table A2. Labor productivity growth and related measures - preliminary first-quarter 2017
(percent change from previous quarter at annual rate and from same quarter a year ago)

                                                Labor                   Hours    Hourly         Real hourly    Unit labor
Sector                  Percent change from:    productivity   Output   worked   compensation   compensation   costs
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Nonfinancial            Previous quarter          -1.5          0.5      2.0        1.9            -1.2           3.4
corporate               A year ago                -0.1          1.2      1.4        2.4            -0.2           2.5
                     
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Table B1. Labor productivity growth and related measures - revised and previously published first-quarter 2017
(percent change from previous quarter at annual rate)

                                                Labor                   Hours    Hourly         Real hourly    Unit labor
Sector                                          productivity   Output   worked   compensation   compensation   costs
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Nonfarm business              Revised              0.0          1.7      1.7        2.2            -0.9           2.2
                        Previously published      -0.6          1.0      1.6        2.4            -0.8           3.0

Business                      Revised             -1.0          1.1      2.2        1.6            -1.5           2.7
                        Previously published      -1.5          0.5      2.1        1.8            -1.3           3.4
                        
Manufacturing                 Revised              0.5          2.6      2.1        2.9            -0.3           2.4
                        Previously published       0.4          2.8      2.4        2.5            -0.6           2.1
                        
 Durable                      Revised             -0.7          2.9      3.6        1.7            -1.4           2.4
 manufacturing          Previously published      -1.1          2.8      4.0        1.4            -1.7           2.5
                        
 Nondurable                   Revised              2.7          2.3     -0.4        4.9             1.7           2.1
 manufacturing          Previously published       3.2          2.8     -0.4        4.6             1.4           1.3
                        
=========================================================================================================================
Table B2. Labor productivity growth and related measures - revised and previously published fourth-quarter 2016
(percent change from previous quarter at annual rate)

                                                Labor                   Hours    Hourly         Real hourly    Unit labor
Sector                                          productivity   Output   worked   compensation   compensation   costs
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Nonfarm business              Revised              1.8          2.7      1.0       -3.0            -5.8          -4.6
                        Previously published       1.8          2.7      1.0        3.1             0.0           1.3

Business                      Revised              2.4          2.6      0.2       -2.1            -5.0          -4.4
                        Previously published       2.4          2.6      0.2        4.0             0.9           1.5

Manufacturing                 Revised              2.0          1.8     -0.2       -1.5            -4.4          -3.4
                        Previously published       2.0          1.8     -0.2        4.2             1.2           2.2

 Durable                      Revised              1.8          2.0      0.2       -1.3            -4.2          -3.1
 manufacturing          Previously published       1.8          2.0      0.2        4.0             0.9           2.1
                        
 Nondurable                   Revised              2.3          1.5     -0.8       -2.1            -5.0          -4.3
 manufacturing          Previously published       2.3          1.5     -0.8        4.6             1.5           2.3
                        
Nonfinancial                  Revised             -4.2         -3.5      0.6       -2.2            -5.1           2.0
corporate               Previously published      -1.0         -0.3      0.6        3.3             0.2           4.3
                        
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Last Modified Date: June 05, 2017