2017 Economic Calendar
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Productivity and Costs  
Released On 6/5/2017 8:30:00 AM For Q1(r):2017
PriorConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Nonfarm productivity - Q/Q change - SAAR-0.6 %-0.2 %-0.4 % to 0.2 %0.0 %
Unit labor costs - Q/Q change - SAAR3.0 %2.6 %2.2 % to 3.0 %2.2 %

Reflecting an upgrade for output, first-quarter nonfarm productivity came in unchanged with unit costs up 2.2 percent both near Econoday expectations. Output in the quarter is now at a 1.7 percent annualized pace for a 7 tenths upward revision in line with revisions to first-quarter GDP released late last month. Hours worked are little changed in this revision, also at 1.7 percent with compensation 2 tenths lower at a 2.2 percent pace.

Improvement in this revision is welcome but the no change headline for productivity is not, pointing to squeezed margins among employers and going to the heart of this cycle's low growth trend.

Consensus Outlook
The first estimate for nonfarm productivity came in at minus 0.6 percent as it took more hours to produce at a slower rate. Weak productivity raises the cost of labor as unit labor costs came in at an annualized 3.0 percent rate. Forecasters see slight improvement for the second estimate with the productivity consensus at minus 0.2 percent and labor costs at plus 2.6 percent.

Productivity measures the growth of labor efficiency in producing the economy's goods and services. Unit labor costs reflect the labor costs of producing each unit of output. Both are followed as indicators of future inflationary trends.  Why Investors Care
Nonfarm productivity growth has remained healthy during this expansion, but it has prevented employment from growing very fast and this hurt income growth to some extent. Unit labor costs tend to fall when productivity growth accelerates and then rises as productivity growth abates.
Data Source: Haver Analytics

2017 Release Schedule
Released On: 2/23/85/46/58/99/711/212/6
Release For: Q4(p):2016Q4(r):2016Q1(p):2017Q1(r):2017Q2(p):2017Q2(r):2017Q3(p):2017Q3(r):2017

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