Worker productivity unexpectedly rises

Say one thing about the nation's pronounced recession: worker productivity has not disappeared.

U.S. Q1 worker productivity unexpectedly rose at a 0.3 percent annualized rate and unit labor costs rose at a 3.3 percent rate, the U.S. Labor Department announced Thursday, as companies continued to find ways to increase per employee output amid difficult business conditions. Further, on a year-over-year basis, productivity rose 1.8 percent.

Economists surveyed by Bloomberg News had expected productivity to be flat in Q1 and unit labor costs to rise 3.4 percent.

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