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Umfang und Kompensation von Überstunden: eine vergleichende Analyse für Westdeutschland und Großbritannien


  • Markus Pannenberg
  • Gert G. Wagner


In the 1990s overtime incidence in Great Britain and West Germany is quite similar, while the average amount of hours of overtime for full-time male workers with overtime in Great Britain is roughly twice those in Germany for all years. We observe striking differences between the two countries with respect to overtime compensation patterns and their change over time. In Germany, we observe a remarkable decrease in the share of workers who work paid overtime and a significant increase in the share of workers with overtime compensated with extra days off later on, while in Great Britain shares of workers with paid or unpaid overtime are quite stable. Considering the relationship of straight-time working hours and the amount of overtime hours, we provide evidence for a strong negative relationship in Great Britain whereas in Germany the impact of straight-time working hours on overtime work is only weakly negative. Furthermore, we illustrate that a policy of reducing the amount of paid overtime would affect the monthly labor earnings distribution in Germany while we cannot detect any impact for Great Britain. Die Studie analysiert die Determinanten der Inzidenz, des Umfangs und der Kompensation von Überstunden in Westdeutschland und Großbritannien in den Jahren 1991 bis 1998. Istdie Inzidenz von Überstunden in beiden Ländern noch durchaus vergleichbar, so arbeiten britische Arbeitnehmer im Mittel doppelt so viel Überstunden wie vergleichbare westdeutsche Arbeitnehmer. Hinsichtlich der Kompensation von Überstunden zeigt sich, dass in Westdeutschland ein starker Rückgang des Anteils der bezahlten Überstunden an allen geleisteten Überstunden im Zeitablauf zu beobachten ist, während in Großbritannien in den 90‘er Jahren die Abgeltungsmuster von Überstunden weitgehend stabil waren. In Westdeutschland ist nur ein sehr schwacher negativer Zusammenhang von tariflich vereinbarter Arbeitszeit und geleistetem Überstundenvolumen zu beobachten, während in Großbritannien eine signifikant negative Beziehung zwischen vereinbarter Wochenarbeitszeit und geleistetem Überstundenvolumen besteht. Dieses Ergebnis legt nahe, dass gesetzliche oder tarifvertragliche Maßnahmen zur Reduktion der vereinbarten wöchentlichen Arbeitszeit in beiden Ländern wohl kaum nennenswerte positive Beschäftigungseffekte zeitigen würden. Eine Simulation der Verteilungseffekte eines vollständigen Abbaus aller bezahlten Überstunden für das Jahr 1998 zeigt, dass in Westdeutschland hochqualifizierte Arbeiter und qualifizierte Angestellte Einkommenseinbußen hinnehmen müssten, während dies in Großbritannien keine nennenswerten Effekte hätte.

Suggested Citation

  • Markus Pannenberg & Gert G. Wagner, 2001. "Umfang und Kompensation von Überstunden: eine vergleichende Analyse für Westdeutschland und Großbritannien," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 234, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:diw:diwwpp:dp234

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Jennifer Hunt, 1999. "Has Work-Sharing Worked in Germany?," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 114(1), pages 117-148.
    2. Bell, David N F & Hart, Robert A, 1999. "Unpaid Work," Economica, London School of Economics and Political Science, vol. 66(262), pages 271-290, May.
    3. Markus Pannenberg & Gert G. Wagner, 1999. "Kaum Beschäftigungseffekte durch Abbau von Überstunden," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 66(31), pages 573-578.
    4. Bell, D. & RA Hart, 1999. "Overtime Working in an Unregulated Labour Market," Working Papers Series 9904, University of Stirling, Division of Economics.
    5. Bauer, Thomas & Zimmermann, Klaus F, 1999. "Overtime Work and Overtime Compensation in Germany," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 46(4), pages 419-436, September.
    6. Markus Pannenberg & Mathis Schröder, 2000. "Betriebliche Sondervergütungen in Deutschland," DIW Wochenbericht, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research, vol. 67(35), pages 561-566.
    7. Bell, David N.F. & Hart, Robert A. & Hübler, Olaf & Schwerdt, Wolfgang, 2000. "Paid and Unpaid Overtime Working in Germany and the UK," IZA Discussion Papers 133, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
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    Cited by:

    1. Hübler, Dominik & Hübler, Olaf, 2006. "Is There a Trade-off Between Job Security and Wages in Germany and the UK?," IZA Discussion Papers 2241, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item


    Overtime; Overtime Compensation; Paneldata;

    JEL classification:

    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
    • J38 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Public Policy


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