A number of articles in the last 2 days have been trying to make sense of a weird statistic: American worker productivity fell by nearly 1% in Q2 '10.
Most of them have got the economic fallout spot on: employee productivity falling means that companies are reaching the limit of what they can achieve with the number of employees they have. And to continue growing they'll need to start recruiting.
Over the next 2-3 months I expect the two numbers to do an inverse-correlation dance: as productivity declines, more people will get hired, thus increasing productivity, thus halting more hiring until the productivity declines again... and so on. But overall, I have no doubt that this is good news for the unemployed.