The U.S. had the most annual growth in productivity since 2010, according to the country’s recent fourth quarter productivity report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
With an annual growth rate of 1.7 percent, the U.S. observed a yearly increase in productivity not seen in the country since it reached 3.4 percent in 2010. Labor productivity was greatly propelled by high growth rates of 3.5 and 2.5 percent in the first two quarters of 2019 before crashing to -0.2 in the third quarter. It rebounded significantly between October and December to 1.4 percent.
Productivity is often viewed as a defining factor for a country’s ability to improve living standards and ultimately raise the average GDP per household. Both 2009 and 2010 saw explosive productivity gains, and those gains have greatly declined and held steady for the better part of the decade.
With slowing jobs growth and even slower overall GDP growth, many experts are highlighting the need for the U.S. and the Trump administration to focus on improving productivity in the country as a way to jumpstart these other economic indicators.