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The 35-hour workweek in France: Straightjacket or welfare improvement?

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  • Marcello Estevão
  • Filipa Sá

Abstract

"Workweek reduction laws may be beneficial if market interactions do not fully take into account the preferences reflected in declining secular trends in working hours. The most recent law in France shortened the workweek from 39 to 35 hours in 2000 for large firms, and in 2002 for small firms. Analysing differences between large and small firm employees before and after the law, we find that aggregate employment was unaffected but labour turnover increased, as firms shed workers who became more expensive. Survey responses indicate that the welfare impact of the law was different across groups of workers: women but not men may have benefited from coordination to a shorter workweek, and there is also evidence of negative welfare effects for managers, possibly due to the law's administrative burden." Copyright (c) CEPR, CES, MSH, 2008..

Suggested Citation

  • Marcello Estevão & Filipa Sá, 2008. "The 35-hour workweek in France: Straightjacket or welfare improvement?," Economic Policy, CEPR;CES;MSH, vol. 23, pages 417-463, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ecpoli:v:23:y:2008:i::p:417-463
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    Cited by:

    1. Costa-Font, Joan & de Miera Juarez, Belen Saenz, 2018. "Working Times and Overweight: Tight Schedules, Weaker Fitness?," IZA Discussion Papers 11702, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Kawaguchi, Daiji & Naito, Hisahiro & Yokoyama, Izumi, 2017. "Assessing the effects of reducing standard hours: Regression discontinuity evidence from Japan," Journal of the Japanese and International Economies, Elsevier, vol. 43(C), pages 59-76.
    3. Matthieu Chemin & Etienne Wasmer, 2009. "Regional Difference-in-Differences in France Using the German Annexation of Alsace-Moselle in 1870-1918," NBER Chapters,in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2008, pages 285-305 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Dominique Goux & Eric Maurin & Barbara Petrongolo, 2014. "Worktime Regulations and Spousal Labor Supply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 104(1), pages 252-276, January.
    5. Alexander Herzog-Stein & Fabian Lindner & Simon Sturn & Till van Treeck, 2010. "Vom Krisenherd zum Wunderwerk?," IMK Report 56-2010, IMK at the Hans Boeckler Foundation, Macroeconomic Policy Institute.
    6. aus dem Moore, Nils & Kasten, Tanja & Schmidt, Christoph M., 2014. "Do Wages Rise when Corporate Taxes Fall? - Evidence from Germany's Tax Reform 2000," Ruhr Economic Papers 532, RWI - Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-University Bochum, TU Dortmund University, University of Duisburg-Essen.
    7. repec:zbw:rwirep:0532 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Pedro Raposo & Jan Ours, 2010. "How a Reduction of Standard Working Hours Affects Employment Dynamics," De Economist, Springer, vol. 158(2), pages 193-207, June.
    9. Nils aus dem Moore & Tanja Kasten & Christoph M. Schmidt, 2014. "Do Wages Rise when Corporate Taxes Fall? - Evidence from Germany’s Tax Reform 2000," Ruhr Economic Papers 0532, Rheinisch-Westfälisches Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung, Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universität Dortmund, Universität Duisburg-Essen.

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