The Economy Grows but Households Work More

The Economy Grows but Households Work More
Family income has grown modestly in recent decades, but mainly due to working more, not higher wages—an average of roughly 700 more annual work hours per household in 2000 compared to 1975, and still roughly 500 more in 2009, even with the financial crisis and downturn of that period. This contrasts sharply with the previous pattern from the late nineteenth century through the mid-twentieth century, as growth and productivity gains were channeled into steadily reducing working hours.