Inscrit le: 06 Nov 2017
|Posté le: Jeu 14 Déc - 10:04 (2017) Sujet du message: Americans Work 25% More Than Europeans, Study Finds
|European workers labor about an hour less a day than their U.S. counterparts, new data suggest.
A new study tries to measure precisely how much more Americans work than Europeans do overall. The answer: The average person in Europe works 19 percent less than the average person in the U.S. That’s about 258 fewer hours per year, or about an hour less each weekday. Another way to look at it: U.S. workers put in almost 25 percent more hours than Europeans.
One theory is that Americans work longer hours because their additional effort is more likely to pay off. People earn a wider range of incomes in the U.S., so “workers have an incentive to try harder to move up the job ladder because a promotion is worth more,” said Dora Gicheva, an economist at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, citing a study that compared the U.S. with Germany.
Taxes are an issue. Despite what Donald Trump has said, taxes in the U.S. are substantially lower than in Europe. Studies have suggested that this higher tax burden reduces the incentive to earn more by putting in extra hours.
Maybe the key factor is that labor unions, along with other worker protections, are much stronger in Europe than in the U.S. “The data strongly suggest that labor regulation and unionization appear to be the dominant factors explaining the differences between the United States and Europe,” economists at Harvard and Dartmouth concluded in a 2006 study (PDF).
Generous pensions in Europe are also a strong factor in discouraging older people from working, the study said. In the U.S., more people over 65 are working than at any point in the past 50 years. The U.S.’s shift from traditional pensions to 401(k) plans makes it harder for Americans to know when it’s safe to retire.
One thing is clear. The difference in hours worked between Americans and Europeans is more than a difference in cultures. As recently as the early 1970s, according to several studies, people in the U.S. and Western Europe worked about the same number of hours per week.
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