U.S. productivity unexpectedly posts first decline since 2015

NONFARM BUSINESS employee output per hour decreased at a 0.3% annualized rate in the third quarter. / BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/ANDREW HARRER
NONFARM BUSINESS employee output per hour decreased at a 0.3% annualized rate in the third quarter. / BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/ANDREW HARRER
WASHINGTON – Productivity in the United States unexpectedly posted the first decline in almost four years and labor costs accelerated, suggesting a pickup in efficiency earlier this year was more of a temporary shift. Nonfarm business employee output per hour decreased at a 0.3% annualized rate in the third quarter, according to Labor Department figures…

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