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Economic News Release
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Productivity by State -- 2019

For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Thursday, May 27, 2021                                               USDL-21-XXXX

Technical information: 	(202) 691-5606  •  • 
Media contact:              	(202) 691-5902  •


Labor productivity in the private nonfarm sector rose in 46 states and the District of Columbia, in 
2019, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. This is the highest number of states with 
positive productivity growth since 2007, the starting year of this series. Output increased in all 50 states 
and the District of Columbia in 2019 while hours worked increased in 33 states and the District. New 
Mexico experienced the highest rate of productivity growth, 3.8 percent.

Labor productivity growth by state, 2019

The ten states with fastest growth in productivity all saw gains of more than 3.0 percent:
	* New Mexico, 3.8 percent
	* Rhode Island, 3.6 percent
	* Virginia, 3.4 percent
	* New Hampshire, 3.4 percent
	* Colorado, 3.4 percent
	* California, 3.4 percent
	* Maryland, 3.3 percent
	* Vermont, 3.2 percent
	* Texas, 3.2 percent
	* Maine, 3.0 percent

All ten top performing states saw increases in output; seven (Rhode Island, Virginia, New 
Hampshire, California, Maryland, Vermont, and Maine) saw declines in hours worked.

Of the ten states with slowest growth (Nevada, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, North Carolina, South 
Dakota, Delaware, Alaska, Georgia, and Minnesota) all saw increases in both output and hours 
Each state’s annual contribution to national productivity growth is calculated by multiplying the state’s 
productivity growth rate by its average share of total current dollar regional output. The economic size of 
each state influences its contribution to national and regional estimates. For 2019, California had the 
largest contribution to national growth. The state’s 3.4 percent growth in labor productivity in 2019 
contributed nearly one quarter of the 2.2 percent growth of the nation.
Long term trends

Labor productivity growth by state, 2007-2019
* Over the long term, labor productivity rose in 47 states and the District of Columbia. 
* Output increased in 49 states during this period while hours worked increased in 37 states. 
* North Dakota experienced the highest rate of growth of 3.1 percent. Connecticut, Louisiana, and 
Wyoming each posted slight declines over the long term.
* The first year of this series coincides with a severe recession. During the recession of 2007 to 
2009, 47 states experienced increases in labor productivity, though only 10 saw growth in output. 
No states saw increases in hours worked during this period.

The states with the largest economies—California, Texas, and New 
York—contributed the most to national productivity growth, accounting for over one third of the 1.3 
percent increase.

Additional Information

Time periods for data covered by this release precede, and are therefore not impacted by, COVID-19.

The productivity and costs measures in this release incorporate data from the [insert sources and release 
date]. Accordingly, the labor productivity and output series for all states have been revised for 2019 and 
earlier years.

Access state productivity data at for
* Detailed data series: indexes of productivity and related measures; rates of change; and levels of state 
employment, hours worked, nominal value of production, and labor compensation 
* Additional years and long-term data

Subscribe to productivity news releases on the BLS website at

Information in this release will be made available to individuals with a sensory impairment upon request. 
Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339. 

Technical Note

Labor Productivity: Labor productivity describes the relationship between real output and the labor 
hours involved in its production. These measures show the changes from period to period in the amount 
of goods and services produced per hour worked. Although the labor productivity measures relate output 
in a state to hours worked of all persons in that state, they do not measure the specific contribution of labor 
to growth in output. Rather, they reflect the joint effects of many influences, including: changes in 
technology; capital investment; utilization of capacity, energy, and materials; the use of purchased services 
inputs, including contract employment services; the organization of production; the characteristics and 
effort of the workforce; and managerial skill. 

Output: BLS state-level measures of output for the private nonfarm sector are created using GDP by state 
and industry data published by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). BEA does not produce a private 
nonfarm sector measure of real output by state. To create the necessary output series, BLS subtracts 
several industry components — the farm sector, private households, and owner-occupied housing — from 
GDP by state using a Fisher ideal index formula. 

Labor Hours: Hours are the number of hours worked by all employed persons, including wage and salary 
workers, self-employed persons, and unpaid family workers. Hours for wage and salary workers are 
primarily from BLS Current Employment Statistics (CES) and hours for self-employed and unpaid family 
workers are from the BLS Current Population Survey (CPS). The hours are adjusted from an hours paid 
basis to an hours worked basis using data from the BLS National Compensation Survey (NCS).


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Last Modified Date: May 20, 2021