Manufacturing unit labor costs up in 2007

February 08, 2008

Unit labor costs in manufacturing increased 1.6 percent in 2007, a reversal from the 1.5-percent decline in 2006.

Annual percent change in manufacturing unit labor costs, 1998-2007
[Chart data—TXT]

The last time that manufacturing unit labor costs experienced an annual increase was in 2003.

In the durable goods manufacturing sector unit labor costs edged up 0.6 percent in 2007 following a 2.9-percent decline in 2006. Unit labor costs in nondurable goods industries rose 3.0 percent in 2007 after declining 0.5 percent in 2006.

Unit labor costs—the cost of the labor input required to produce one unit of output—are computed by dividing labor costs in nominal terms by real output. Unit labor costs can also be expressed as the ratio of hourly compensation to labor productivity.

These data are from the BLS Productivity and Costs program. Data are subject to revision. For more information, see the "Productivity and Costs, Preliminary Fourth Quarter and Annual Averages for 2007" (PDF) (HTML), news release USDL 08-0171.

SUGGESTED CITATION

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Manufacturing unit labor costs up in 2007 on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2008/feb/wk1/art05.htm (visited July 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.