May 07, 2009
In the private business sector, multifactor productivity—output per combined units of labor and capital inputs—rose 1.2 percent in 2008. The multifactor productivity gain in 2008 reflected a 0.8-percent increase in output and a 0.3-percent decrease in the combined inputs of capital and labor.
The increase in multifactor productivity in the private business sector for 2008 was the largest annual rate of growth since 2005.
Capital services grew 2.9 percent in 2008. Labor input posted a decrease of 1.9 percent, as both hours worked and labor composition fell. Labor input reflects the change in hours at work adjusted for the effects of changing labor composition. The decrease of labor input was due to a decrease in hours at work of 1.9 percent and a decrease in labor composition of 0.1 percent. The capital-labor ratio (capital services per hour of all persons) increased by 4.9 percent.
These data are from the Multifactor Productivity program. Productivity data are subject to revision. To learn more, see "Preliminary Multifactor Productivity Trends, 2008," news release USDL 09-480 (PDF) (HTML). A change in multifactor productivity reflects the change in output that cannot be accounted for by the change in combined inputs of labor and capital.