I’m suprised by this claim from an ONS economist:Economists have been puzzled by the fact that GDP appeared to continue falling, or remain flat, when employment rates – which are much slower to reflect upturns in the economy than GDP – appear to have stabilised.Aileen Simkins, economist at ONS, noted that one reason may be the divergence of full and part-time employment.Part-time employment is rising while full-time employment is falling.
Paul Walker wonders whether we need macroeconomics at all. He says: “Maybe aggregate economics just doesn't work, we lose too much valuable information in the process.”I agree. Today’s labour market numbers show the point.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Nonfarm productivity fell in the first quarter as companies hired more workers to maintain output, but a moderate rise in wages suggested little pressure on company profits and inflation. Productivity slipped at a 0.5 percent annual rate, the Labor Department said on Thursday, after rising at an upwardly revised 1.2 percent rate in the last three months of 2011. The decline in productivity, which measures hourly output per worker, was in line with expectations. Fourth-quarter productivity had been previously reported to have increased at a 0.9 percent rate. ...
PRODUCTIVITY DOWN: U.S. worker productivity fell at an annual rate of 0.9 percent in the January-March period, the Labor Department said. It was the largest drop in a year and greater than the initial 0.5 percent estimate.
AP - Worker productivity fell this spring more quickly than previously estimated and labor costs rose at a faster clip. The decline in worker output could mean that some companies need to hire if they want to meet growing demand.