With Labor Costs Easing, U.S. Companies Invest Less in Technology

American labor costs have been so well contained of late that the proportion of nonfarm business revenue going toward wages, salaries, and benefits hit a record low 57.9% in the first quarter of 2012, the most recent period for which figures are available, says the Wall Street Journal. A decade earlier, the share was 62.7%. But when labor costs are low, companies are less willing to invest in labor-saving technology; the 10-year period ended in 2011, the latest on record, was the weakest for tech investment since World War II, the Journal says.

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