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Stress that Doesn't Pay: The Commuting Paradox

  • Alois Stutzer
  • Bruno S. Frey

People spend a lot of time commuting and often find it a burden. According to standard economics, the burden of commuting is chosen when compensated either on the labor or on the housing market so that individuals' utility is equalized. However, in a direct test of this strong notion of equilibrium with panel data, we find that people with longer commuting time report systematically lower subjective well-being. This result is robust with regard to a number of alternative explanations. We mention several possibilities of an extended model of human behavior able to explain this "commuting paradox". Copyright © The editors of the "Scandinavian Journal of Economics" 2008 .

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Article provided by Wiley Blackwell in its journal Scandinavian Journal of Economics.

Volume (Year): 110 (2008)
Issue (Month): 2 (06)
Pages: 339-366

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Handle: RePEc:bla:scandj:v:110:y:2008:i:2:p:339-366
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