Sources and footnotes for tables
Last Modified Date: September 06, 2018
SOURCES: Output data are from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and the Census Bureau of the U.S.
Department of Commerce; the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor; and the Federal
Reserve Board. Hours and compensation data are from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Bureau of
RELIABILITY: Productivity and cost measures are regularly revised as more complete information
becomes available. The measures are first published within 40 days of the close of the reference period;
revisions appear 30 days later, and second revisions after an additional 60 days. In the business sector,
the third publication (second revision) of a quarterly index of output per hour of all persons has differed
from the initial value by between -1.5 and 1.4 index points approximately 95 percent of the time. This
interval is based on the performance of this measure between the fourth quarter of 1995 and the first
quarter of 2018.
(1) Wages and salaries of employees plus employers' contributions for social insurance and private
benefit plans. Except for nonfinancial corporations, where there are no self-employed, data also include
an estimate of wages, salaries, and supplemental payments for the self-employed.
(2) The change for recent quarters is based on the Consumer Price Index for all urban consumers
(CPI-U). The trend from 1978-2017 is based on the Consumer Price Index research series (CPI-U-RS).
(3) Unit nonlabor payments include profits, consumption of fixed capital, taxes on production and
imports less subsidies, net interest and miscellaneous payments, business current transfer payments,
rental income of persons, and the current surplus of government enterprises.
(4) Current dollar output divided by the output index.
(5) Quarterly changes: Percent change compounded at annual rate is calculated using index numbers to
three decimal places. Indexes published in the news release are rounded to one decimal place for
convenience. Annual changes: Percent change is calculated using annual indexes to three decimal
(6) Unit nonlabor costs include consumption of fixed capital, taxes on production and imports less
subsidies, net interest and miscellaneous payments, and business current transfer payments.
(7) Total unit costs are the sum of unit labor and nonlabor costs.
(8) Unit profits include corporate profits before tax with inventory valuation and capital consumption