ILC Data by Indicator

ILC Features and Special Studies

Monthly ILC reports discontinued; related data available via other programs   

Monthly data series on consumer prices and employment have been discontinued as part of International Labor Comparisons (ILC) and have been transitioned to The Conference Board Business Cycle Indicators (BCI) program. Monthly international indicators on inflation, employment and unemployment in the BCI database are prepared using ILC methodologies. To download these indicators, see the US BCI series.

International Labor Comparisons

Charting International Labor Comparisons, 2014

21 Mar. 2014

Compare national labor markets and international competitiveness through charts and accompanying insights. Charts highlight labor costs, labor productivity, and other comparable indicators for up to 38 countries, including emerging economies.  Learn More


Labor Force, Employment, and Unemployment

Monthly Unemployment Rates and Employment Indexes, 2007-2015 (updated monthly)

08 May 2015

In March, labor markets improved or remained steady in all Euro Area countries compared except Italy, which again sustained rising unemployment and lower employment levels.  Swedish employment levels remained steady in March, but the unemployment rate in Sweden experienced a 0.4 percentage point decrease (from 7.8 to 7.4 percent), the largest decline since June 2012. Outside of Europe, Australia saw a second month of lower unemployment and higher employment levels.

To download monthly international unemployment rates and employment indexes, visit The Conference Board Business Cycle Indicators (BCI) program. International comparisons of monthly indicators are part of the U.S. BCI series. See country notes and technical notes associated with these series.

International Comparisons of Annual Labor Force Statistics, 1970-2013

28 Aug. 2014

In the US, Canada, Germany, and Japan, rapidly falling unemployment rates reflect tightening labor markets. In contrast, high unemployment and increasing labor participation rates in Europe has resulted in an excess of available labor willing to fill jobs. Across most countries, growing numbers of women and older workers are joining the workforce, while youth are struggling to find jobs and increasingly dropping out of the labor force.  Learn More


Hourly Compensation Costs (Wages and Benefits)

International Comparisons of Hourly Compensation Costs in the Manufacturing Sector, 1996-2013

17 Dec. 2014

Relative to 2012, Japan, Greece, Brazil, Australia, Singapore, Canada and Taiwan all saw decreases in US dollar-denominated hourly compensation costs, reflecting improved labor-cost competitiveness against the US in 2013. There is also a wide disparity of labor-cost trends within the Euro Area, as European labor markets recover differently. Further, the latest compensation trends suggest that India is better placed than China to maintain and extend its manufacturing competitiveness.

Compensation costs by sub-manufacturing industry and special estimates on manufacturing compensation in China and India are accessible in time series tables and interactive dashboards.  Learn More


Productivity and Unit Labor Costs

Updated. International Comparisons of Manufacturing Productivity & Unit Labor Costs Trends, 2014

26 May. 2015

The Conference Board International Labor Comparison (ILC) database reported a mild strengthening in manufacturing competitiveness in 2014 among most mature economies, primarily due to increased productivity. This improvement in labor cost per unit of manufacturing output, or unit labor cost (ULC), in part reflects the fact that average manufacturing productivity growth has held up at 1.3 percent in 2014 relative to 1.2 percent 2013. While hourly labor costs denominated in national currency continued to rise, most notably in the Euro Area, the appreciation of the US dollar against many currencies beginning in 2014 offset labor cost increases and made manufacturing production outside the United States less expensive in US dollar terms.  Learn more.


Consumer Prices

Monthly International Indexes of Consumer Prices, (Updated Monthly)

08 May 2015

In March, inflation trends based on the Harmonized Index of Consumer Prices (HICP) were mixed.  Annual inflation increased in 11 of 17 economies compared, yet 8 of those economies still experienced a deflationary environment.  While oil prices continued to rise in March, energy prices as a whole had very little impact on inflation overall.  Annual inflation for March actually decreased in the United States, Italy, Norway, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom

To download monthly international price indexes and inflation rates visit The Conference Board Business Cycle Indicators (BCI) program. International comparisons of monthly indicators are part of the U.S. BCI series. See country notes and technical notes associated with these series.

International Indexes of Consumer Prices, 2013

15 Apr. 2014

Average annual inflation in 2013 slowed in 13 of the 16 economies compared, and most economies experienced declining inflation for the second year in a row. Inflation in the Euro Area as a whole fell from 2.5 percent in 2012 to 1.3 percent in 2013, reflecting the sluggish economic conditions in member countries throughout the year. Learn more.



Insight Minute Videos



  How does corporate sustainability in China affect your organization?





  How should CFO's prepare for China's inevitable slowdown?



View all Insight Minutes


International and Labor Market Webcasts

 Navigating Changing Oil Prices - Europe Focus


 28 April, 2015 | Special Webcast

 Given the recent uncertainty, this webcast offers a range of oil
 price scenarios  to understand potential impacts on
 businesses in Europe.


 Sustainability in China: Multinationals in the Crosshairs


 27 April, 2015 | KnowlEdge Series®

 Anke Schrader's latest work assesses the sustainability performance
 of  Fortune 500 companies in China, and provides insights on
 sustainability  leadership that apply both to China and other
 emerging markets.


 Economics Watch® - Emerging Markets View: Will Latin America
 Survive Increasing Economic Turbulence?


 16 April, 2015 | Economics Watch®

 What are Latin America’s growth prospects in 2015? Amid
 economic turbulence and commodity price volatility, the region
 continues to struggle. Join us for an interactive discussion on 
             the future of the region and how it might affect your business.


View all Webcasts on Demand


Discontinued ILC Series

International Comparisons of GDP per capita & per hour worked, 2012

17 Dec. 2013

 XLS Time Series tables, 1960-2012

 PDF  Technical Notes

 Ongoing Related Series: See The Conference Board Total Economy DatabaseTM (TED) for international comparisons of GDP, population, employment, hours worked, labor quality, capital services, labor productivity, and total factor productivity for 123 countries.


About the International Labor Comparisons Program

Formerly a division of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the International Labor Comparisons (ILC) program prepares economic indicators that are comparable across countries. Often statistics from different countries are not comparable and do not allow for meaningful comparative analysis. In contrast, ILC adjusts economic statistics to facilitate meaningful and accurate comparisons between countries by using a common conceptual framework. These data can be used to evaluate the economic performance of one country relative to others.

ILC was eliminated by the federal government in 2013 due to across-the-board spending cuts. ILC produces internationally comparative datasets using the same concepts and methodology as those previously used by BLS. For historical data see

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