Bureau of Labor Statistics

Productivity in retail trade, 2003

September 27, 2004

Productivity, as measured by output per hour, increased 5.1 percent in retail trade in 2003. Output rose by 4.5 percent while hours declined by 0.6 percent.

Productivity and related measures, retail trade, 1987-2003 and 2003-03 (annual percent change)
[Chart data—TXT]

Labor productivity rose in 23 of the 27 retail trade industries in 2003. The highest increases were 25.3 percent in electronics and appliance stores and 15.8 percent in electronic shopping and mail-order houses. Productivity grew in five of the six largest retail trade industries, those with more than 1,000,000 employees.

From 1987 to 2003, labor productivity in retail trade increased 2.9 percent per year, while output increased 3.9 percent, and hours increased 0.9 percent per year.

This information is from the BLS Productivity and Costs Program. Data are subject to revision. Additional information is available from "Productivity by Industry: Wholesale Trade, Retail Trade, and Food Services and Drinking Places, 2003" (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 04-1832.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Productivity in retail trade, 2003 at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2004/sept/wk4/art01.htm (visited January 26, 2022).


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