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July 1990, Vol. 113, No. 7
Productivity in the rubber and plastics hose and belting industry
John W. Ferris and Virginia L. Klarquist
Advances in rubber technology, improvements in machinery, plant reorganization, and the adoption of computer technology have all contributed to the rise in productivity in the rubber and plastics hose and belting industry. However, stronger growth was inhibited by weak demand for hoses and belts, and stagnant capital spending by the industry.
Productivity, or output per employee hour, rose at an average annual rate of 1.3 percent from 1972 to 1987.1 This trend was well below the rate for all manufacturing, which grew 2.5 percent per year during the same period. Declining industry output combined with this modest productivity growth has led to a reduction in work force hours. The growth in industry productivity reflected an average decline in output of 1.2 percent per year and a larger decline in employee hours of 2.5 percent per year. As the following tabulation shows, the most notable declines in industry productivity occurred in the late 1970's.
Productivity trends in the rubber and plastics hose and belting industry can be divided into three distinct periods. From 1972 to 1976, productivity rose at an average annual rate of 4.3 percent. Productivity advanced in each year during this period. Output increased 0.6 percent per year, while hours fell 3.5 percent per year. The industry's capital expenditures contributed to the growth in output per hour.
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1 The rubber and plastics hose and belting industry is designated by the U. S. Office of Management and Budget as SIC 3052 (formerly SIC 3041) in its Standard Industrial Classification Manual 1987. This industry comprises establishments engaged primarily in the manufacture of rubber and plastics hose and belting, including garden hose.
The average annual rates of change presented in the text are based on the linear least squares trend rate of the logarithms of the index numbers. These rates of change which represent an average rate of growth between beginning and ending years.
Extensions of the indexes will appear annually in the BLS bulletin, Productivity Measures for Selected Industries and Government Services. A technical note describing the methods used to develop the indexes is available form the Office of Productivity and Technology, Division of Industry Productivity and Technology Studies.
Productivity trends in the mobile homes industry.May 1997.
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