Korea, Taiwan had biggest factory productivity gains in 2005

February 27, 2007

Among 16 countries under comparison, all had manufacturing productivity gains in 2005. Korea and Taiwan had the largest productivity increases.

Manufacturing output per hour, selected countries, percent change, 2004-2005
[Chart data—TXT]

The U.S. increase of 3.3 percent placed it eighth among the 16 economies compared. The U.S. increase was less than its average annual growth rate since 1979. Nevertheless, since 1995, only Korea and Sweden have had greater productivity growth than the United States.

Korea and Taiwan continued to be among the leaders in the growth of manufacturing output, as they have been for the last decade. Sweden, also a leader in manufacturing growth over the decade, had more modest output growth in 2005. U.S. manufacturing output growth, like that of most of the economies, also slowed in 2005.

While 12 of the economies had increases in output, all 16 economies had reductions in hours. The Netherlands had the greatest decline (-3.8 percent) in hours in 2005, followed closely by the United Kingdom (-3.6 percent) and Belgium (-3.2 percent).

Data for Spain are included in this news release for the first time. Manufacturing productivity increased in Spain by 0.8 percent in 2005.

These data are from the Foreign Labor Statistics program. Data are subject to revision. This article updates one that appeared in The Editor’s Desk in 2006: "International factory productivity gains in 2005". Additional information is available in "International Comparisons of Manufacturing Productivity and Unit Labor Cost Trends, 2005, Revised" (PDF) (TXT), news release USDL 07-0283.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Korea, Taiwan had biggest factory productivity gains in 2005 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2007/feb/wk4/art02.htm (visited September 26, 2016).

OF INTEREST

Recent editions of Spotlight on Statistics

  • A look at healthcare spending, employment, pay, benefits, and prices
    As one of the largest U.S. industries, healthcare is steadily growing to meet the needs of an increasing population with an increasing life expectancy. This Spotlight looks at how much people spend on healthcare, current and projected employment in the industry, employer-provided healthcare benefits, healthcare prices, and pay for workers in healthcare occupations.

  • Employment and Wages in Healthcare Occupations
    Healthcare occupations are a significant percentage of U.S. employment. Some of the largest and highest paying occupations are in healthcare. This Spotlight examines employment and wages for healthcare occupations.

  • Fifty years of looking at changes in peoples lives
    Longitudinal surveys help us understand long-term changes, such as how events that happened when a person was in high school affect labor market success as an adult.