December 04, 2008
Productivity in the nonfarm business sector—as measured by output per hour—rose at a 1.3-percent annual rate in the third quarter of 2008, slower than the 2.1 percent rate over the last four quarters, and slower than the trend rate of 2.5 percent per year from 2000 to 2007. Productivity growth for the third quarter was originally estimated at 1.1 percent.
Output in the nonfarm business sector decreased at an annual rate of 1.9 percent in the third quarter; the original estimate was -1.7 percent. Hours of all persons engaged in the sector declined 3.1 percent; the original estimate was a 2.7-percent decline. As revised, the output and hours measures had not declined as quickly since the third quarter of 2001 and the first quarter of 2002, respectively.
In the second quarter of 2008, productivity increased 3.6 percent, reflecting a gain of 2.8 percent in output and a decrease of 0.8 percent in hours.
These data are from the BLS Productivity and Costs program. Data in this report are seasonally adjusted annual rates. These estimates are subject to revision. Additional information is available in "Productivity and Costs, Third Quarter 2008, Revised," (PDF) (HTML) news release USDL 08-1773.