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Unemployment, Market Work and Household Production


  • Burda, Michael C
  • Hamermesh, Daniel S.


Using time-diary data from four countries we show that the unemployed spend most of the time not working for pay in additional leisure and personal maintenance, not in increased household production. There is no relation between unemployment duration and the split of time between household production and leisure. U.S. data for 2003-2006 show that almost none of the lower amount of market work in areas of long-term high unemployment is offset by additional household production. In contrast, in those areas where unemployment has risen cyclically reduced market work is made up almost entirely by additional time spent in household production.

Suggested Citation

  • Burda, Michael C & Hamermesh, Daniel S., 2009. "Unemployment, Market Work and Household Production," CEPR Discussion Papers 7166, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpr:ceprdp:7166

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi, 1991. "The Allocation of Capital and Time over the Business Cycle," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1188-1214, December.
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    3. Burda, Michael C. & Hamermesh, Daniel S., 2010. "Unemployment, market work and household production," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 107(2), pages 131-133, May.
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    5. Mark Aguiar & Erik Hurst, 2007. "Measuring Trends in Leisure: The Allocation of Time Over Five Decades," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 122(3), pages 969-1006.
    6. Katz, Lawrence F. & Meyer, Bruce D., 1990. "The impact of the potential duration of unemployment benefits on the duration of unemployment," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 41(1), pages 45-72, February.
    7. Michael C. Burda & Daniel S. Hamermesh, 2009. "Evidence on Unemployment, Market Work and Household Production," SFB 649 Discussion Papers SFB649DP2009-043, Sonderforschungsbereich 649, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany.
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    9. Michael Hurd, 1980. "A Compensation Measure of the Cost of Unemployment to the Unemployed," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 95(2), pages 225-243.
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    14. Namkee Ahn, & Juan F. Jimeno & Arantza Ugidos, "undated". "“Mondays at the sun”: Unemployment, Time Use, and Consumption Patterns in Spain," Working Papers 2003-18, FEDEA.
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    More about this item


    household production; paid work; time use; unemployment;

    JEL classification:

    • D13 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Production and Intrahouse Allocation
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply

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