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Productivity growth in 2003

February 06, 2004

Productivity in the nonfarm business sector, as measured by output per hour, rose 4.2 percent in the nonfarm business sector during 2003, reflecting a 3.7-percent rise in output and a 0.5-percent decline in hours.

Annual percent change in nonfarm business productivity, 1994-2003
[Chart data—TXT]

During 2002, productivity had increased 4.9 percent in nonfarm business, as output rose 2.3 percent and hours of all persons fell 2.5 percent. The 2002 productivity increase was the largest since 1950, when productivity rose 6.6 percent.

When the productivity increases for 2002 and 2003 are combined, productivity for the 2001-2003 period rose 4.5 percent in nonfarm businesses. The last comparable two-year rise occurred over the 1949-1951 period, when productivity increased at a 4.6 percent annual rate, incorporating rises of 6.6 percent in 1950 and 2.7 percent in 1951.

These data are a product of the BLS Productivity and Costs program. Data are subject to revision. Additional information is available in "Productivity and Costs, Fourth-Quarter 2003 (Preliminary)" (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 04-119.


Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Productivity growth in 2003 on the Internet at (visited March 28, 2015).


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