Friday, February 6, 2009

Aggregate Hours Decline Less than They have in any Month Since September

Aggregate hours were lower in January than in December -- neither a surprise nor good news. However, aggregate hours declined less than they have recently. The table below shows the percentage change in aggregate hours (private industries) from the previous month, starting in Sept 2008.

-0.57% Sep
-0.76% Oct
-0.86% Nov
-0.77% Dec
-0.68% Jan

Note that aggregate hours are the product of employment and hours per employee. Interestingly, employment dropped a lot Dec-Jan, but hours per employee did not. In previous months, both employees and hours were making about equal contributions to the aggregate hours changes.

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