U.S. productivity rises 2.6 percent in fourth quarter of 2010

13:57, February 04, 2011      

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U.S. nonfarm business sector labor productivity increased at a 2.6 percent annual rate during the forth quarter of 2010, a pace higher than upwardly revised 2.4 percent in the previous quarter, the U.S. Labor Department reported Thursday.

The department reported that the gain in productivity reflects increases of 4.5 percent in output and 1.8 percent in hours worked.

Unit labor costs in nonfarm businesses declined 0.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010, as the increase in productivity outpaced the increase of hourly compensation.

For all of 2010, labor productivity increased 3.6 percent from 2009.

Manufacturing sector productivity grew 5.8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010. Annual average productivity grew 6.0 percent from 2009 to 2010.

Productivity measures the amount of output per hour of work. The increase of productivity is usually considered as a positive sign of economic recovery.

In a latest report released by the Commerce Department, the U.S. real GDP growth rate grew at a pace of 3.2 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010, up from 2.6 percent in the third quarter.

Source: Xinhua
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