Productivity Statistics

Productivity is a benchmark in economics. Absolute or relative changings in productivity (e.g. compared to industrial competitors or even nations) determine profits, incomes and finally the wealth of nations - the way we live.

Productivity comprises a number of measures as e.g output per hour or per unit of labor/capital input or corresponding combinations.



"Productivity is commonly defined as a ratio of a volume measure of output to a volume measure of input use. While there is no disagreement on this general notion, a look at the productivity literature and its various applications reveals very quickly that there is neither a unique purpose for nor a single measure." Source: OECD, Paris

Some productivity measurements

"Output per hour of all persons (labor productivity) is the value of goods and services in constant prices produced per hour of labor input.

Compensation per hour is the wages and salaries of employees plus employers' contributions for social insurance and private benefit plans, and the wages, salaries, and supplementary payments for the self-employed - the sum of these divided by hours of work.

Real compensation per hour is compensation per hour deflated by the change in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers.

Unit labor costs are the labor costs expended in the production of a unit of output and are derived by dividing compensation by output.

Unit nonlabor payments include profits, depreciation, interest, and indirect taxes per unit of output. They are computed by subtracting compensation of all persons from "current-currency-value" of output and dividing by output.

Unit nonlabor costs contain all the components of unit non-labor payment except unit profits.

Hours of all persons are the total hours at work of payroll workers, self-employed persons, and unpaid family workers." 1)

Note: definitions might differ by source


1) Business Statistics of the United States, Courtenay M. Slater, Cornelia J. Strawser (editors), 1998, p. 405

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