The report also showed that unit labor costs, or how much workers are paid per unit of output, surged by 11.6% during the quarter. That reflects a 3.2% increase in hourly compensation and a 7.5% decrease in productivity.
Analysts polled by Refinitiv had projected a 5.4% decline in productivity and a 9.9% rise in labor costs.
“Nonfarm labor productivity growth is always prone to short-term swings, since it is derived from the growth in output and hours worked, which in any given quarter can change at wildly different paces,” she wrote. “As with many things, the extreme conditions of the pandemic-economy continues to magnify these characteristics.”
“When you get by all that, the US economy is growing healthily,” she said.
Anneken Tappe contributed to this story.
This story is developing and will be updated.