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US Productivity Grew at 2.2 Pct. Rate in Spring

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WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. companies got more output from their workers this spring than initially thought. The modest gain may mean that hiring could stay sluggish this year.

The Labor Department says productivity increased at an annual rate of 2.2 percent in the April-June quarter, up from an initial estimate of a 1.6 percent gain. Labor costs rose at an annual rate of 1.5 percent, slightly lower than the 1.7 percent initially estimated.

The government said the economy grew at an annual rate of 1.7 percent in the April-June quarter, up slightly from an initial estimate of 1.5 percent. The increase led to higher productivity gains because productivity is the amount of output per hour worked.

Rising productivity can also slow job creation if it means companies are getting more from their current staff and don’t need to add workers.

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