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The Causes of Hours Constraints: Evidence from Canada


  • Shulamit B. Kahn
  • Kevin Lang


Over half of workers are dissatisfied with the number of hour they work and of these the vast majority desire more rather than fewer hours. Using the Canadian Survey of Work Reduction, the authors examine two potential explanations for hours constraints--long-term contracts due to worker moral-hazard or specific-capital and implicit contracts in which wages are insured but hours fluctuate. The authors' results contradict the moral-hazard and insurance models and weakly support the specific-capital model.

Suggested Citation

  • Shulamit B. Kahn & Kevin Lang, 1995. "The Causes of Hours Constraints: Evidence from Canada," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 28(4a), pages 914-928, November.
  • Handle: RePEc:cje:issued:v:28:y:1995:i:4a:p:914-28

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Georgellis, Yannis & Gregoriou, Andros & Tsitsianis, Nikolaos, 2008. "Adaptation towards reference values: A non-linear perspective," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 67(3-4), pages 768-781, September.
    2. Carmen Camacho & Fabio Mariani & Luca Pensieroso, 2017. "Illegal immigration and the shadow economy," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 24(6), pages 1050-1080, December.
    3. Steven Stern & Petra Todd, 2000. "A Test Of Lazear’S Mandatory Retirement Model," Virginia Economics Online Papers 391, University of Virginia, Department of Economics.
    4. Francis Green & Nicholas Tsitsianis, 2004. "Can the Changing Nature of Jobs Account for National Trends in Job Satisfaction?," Studies in Economics 0406, School of Economics, University of Kent.
    5. Muriel Dejemeppe & Catherine Smith & Bruno der Linden, 2015. "Did the Intergenerational Solidarity Pact increase the employment rate of older workers in Belgium? A macro-econometric evaluation," IZA Journal of Labor Policy, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-23, December.
    6. Anne C. Gielen, 2009. "Working hours flexibility and older workers' labor supply," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 61(2), pages 240-274, April.
    7. Yi-Ping Tseng & Mark Wooden, 2005. "Preferred vs Actual Working Hours in Couple Households," Melbourne Institute Working Paper Series wp2005n07, Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research, The University of Melbourne.
    8. René Böheim & Mark P. Taylor, 2004. "Actual and Preferred Working Hours," British Journal of Industrial Relations, London School of Economics, vol. 42(1), pages 149-166, March.
    9. Emiko Usui & Satoshi Shimizutani & Takashi Oshio, 2016. "Are Japanese Men of Pensionable Age Underemployed or Overemployed?," The Japanese Economic Review, Japanese Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 150-168, June.
    10. RenÈ B–heim & Mark P. Taylor, 2003. "Option Or Obligation? The Determinants Of Labour Supply Preferences In Britain," Manchester School, University of Manchester, vol. 71(2), pages 113-131, March.
    11. Marimon, Ramon & Zilibotti, Fabrizio, 2000. "Employment and distributional effects of restricting working time," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 44(7), pages 1291-1326, June.
    12. Drolet, Marie & Morissette, Rene, 1997. "Travailler plus? Travailler moins? Que preferent les travailleurs canadiens?," Direction des etudes analytiques : documents de recherche 1997104f, Statistics Canada, Direction des etudes analytiques.
    13. Catherine SMITH, 2014. "Did the Intergenerational Solidarity Pact increase the employment rate of the elderly in Belgium? A macro-econometric evaluation," Discussion Papers (IRES - Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales) 2014009, Université catholique de Louvain, Institut de Recherches Economiques et Sociales (IRES).
    14. Thomas Moutos & William Scarth, 2000. "Work-Sharing: an Efficiency-Wage Analysis," CESifo Working Paper Series 386, CESifo Group Munich.
    15. Rebitzer, James B & Taylor, Lowell J, 1995. "Do Labor Markets Provide Enough Short-Hour Jobs? An Analysis of Work Hours and Work Incentives," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 33(2), pages 257-273, April.
    16. Usui, Emiko, 2009. "Wages, non-wage characteristics, and predominantly male jobs," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(1), pages 52-63, January.
    17. Emiko Usui, 2015. "Occupational gender segregation in an equilibrium search model," IZA Journal of Labor Economics, Springer;Forschungsinstitut zur Zukunft der Arbeit GmbH (IZA), vol. 4(1), pages 1-14, December.
    18. Martinez-Granado, Maite, 2005. "Testing labour supply and hours constraints," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 12(3), pages 321-343, June.
    19. Drolet, Marie & Morissette, Rene, 1997. "Working More? Working Less? What Do Canadian Workers Prefer?," Analytical Studies Branch Research Paper Series 1997104e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    20. Usui, Emiko, 2012. "Gender Occupational Segregation in an Equilibrium Search Model," CIS Discussion paper series 560, Center for Intergenerational Studies, Institute of Economic Research, Hitotsubashi University.

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