April 2014

IZA DP No. 8129: The Productivity of Working Hours

published in: Economic Journal, 2015, 125 (589), 2052-2076

Observations on munition workers, most of them women, are organized to examine the relationship between their output and their working hours. The relationship is nonlinear: below an hours threshold, output is proportional to hours; above a threshold, output rises at a decreasing rate as hours increase. Implications of these results for the estimation of labor supply functions are taken up. The findings also link up with current research on the effects of long working hours on accidents and injuries.