this paper uses shift-share decomposition techniques to analyze the evolution of the brazilian labor productivity and convergence among brazilian states. the period 1985-1995 is characterized by widespread and severe drop in productivity, with weak convergence and an important role of the component associated with structural changes of state economies. in the period 1995-2005 brazilian productivity had a slow recovery, a s？o paulo state phenomenon, driven by its industry. in most states productivity showed with predominant role of the component associated with growth within the significant recovery. not by chance the speed of convergence has accelerated, sectors. moreover, the productivity convergence has been driven mainly by industrial and services sectors, replicating the european evidence.