Labor market productivity has been dropping for decades. And you can trace the plunge back to the demise of the gold standard.
US labor market productivity plummeted in the third quarter of 2021. Revisions to the data showed a 5.2% drop in productivity, even worse than the dismal initial reading last month. It was the worst productivity decline since 1960.
Stock markets made new highs on Wednesday, but as Peter Schiff explained in his latest podcast, there are a lot of cracks under the surface. The markets are surging forward even as they overlook bad economic data and chilly political winds.
US productivity numbers for the first quarter of this year were disappointing, to say the least. Analysts expected Q1 productivity to rise by point 0.7%. Instead, it came in at nearly half that, rising by 0.4%. This was only a slight improvement over the 0.3% increase in the final quarter of 2017.
There wasn’t a whole lot of chatter about sluggish productivity in the mainstream financial press, but in his recent podcast, Peter Schiff pointed out that it could have significant ramifications for the economy – and on your pocketbook. If you’re counting on productivity to keep a lid on consumer prices, you have a big problem.