The Bureau of Economic Analysis announced on July 29, 2021 that real economic output of the US grew at an annual rate of 6.5% in the second quarter. Following on the heels of a strong first quarter, US GDP has exceeded its pre-pandemic levels in remarkably short order. Economic growth has been driven by solid improvements in labor productivity since the second quarter of 2020, rising at an annualized rate of 3.8%.

These numbers stand in stark contrast to the low rate of productivity improvements that were typical in the years 2005-2019, when they averaged just 1.4%.

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As The Economist has noted, “America is producing more output than it managed just a year and a half ago, with roughly 6m fewer workers.”

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