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August 10, 2004
Productivity Growth Slows, Hourly Compensation Rises

Productivity grew by an annual rate of 2.9 percent during the second quarter of 2004, as output increased 3.8 percent and hours of all persons rose 0.8 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported.

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Productivity growth was slower in the second quarter than it was the first quarter.

Hourly compensation increased 4.9 percent in the second quarter of 2004, up from the 4.0-percent rise one quarter earlier. When the rise in consumer prices is taken into account, real hourly compensation rose 0.1 percent in the second quarter of 2004 and 0.3 percent in the first quarter.

Unit labor costs, which reflect changes in both hourly compensation and productivity, increased 1.9 percent in the second quarter of 2004, after rising 0.3 percent during the first quarter.

Productivity increased 7.5 percent in manufacturing, as output grew 6.6 percent and hours of all persons declined 0.9 percent. In the previous quarter, productivity rose 2.8 percent.

The bureau revised overall productivity figures downward for the first quarter, from 3.8 percent to 3.7 percent.

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