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Do Americans Really Work More Than Europeans?

Do Americans Really Work More Than Europeans?
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Ask a European their thoughts on the average American worker, and a typical response could be Americans work too much. Ask an American their thought on a typical European worker, and the response could be the opposite — they don't work enough.

According to Bloomberg, a new unpublished working paper by economists Alexander Bick of Arizona State University, Bettina Bruggemann of McMaster University in Ontario and Nicola Fuchs-Schundeln of Goethe University Frankfurt sheds no light on the topic.

The average European works 19 percent less than the average worker in the United States. As a whole, Europeans work around one hour less each day, which translates to 258 few hours per year.

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U.S. workers work on average 26.1 hours per week, and workers in Switzerland work the most among Europeans at 25.1 hours per week. Italians work the fewest hours per week at 18.4 hours.

Workers in Switzerland share the most similarities with American workers, while Italians rank last and work 29 percent few hours than Americans do.

A possible reason to explain why Americans work more is attributed to the fact that American companies are more likely to reward hard work through promotions and pay raises.

Taxes also play an issue in explaining the phenomenon.

"Americans are indeed richer than Europeans, and one reason why is because of taxes that depress the incentives to work in Europe," Lee Ohanian, an economist at the University of California-Los Angeles, told Bloomberg.

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