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Work from Home Before and After the COVID-19 Outbreak

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Abstract

Based on novel survey data, we document the evolution of commuting behavior in the U.S. over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Work from home (WFH) increased sharply and persistently after the outbreak, and much more so among some workers than others. Using theory and evidence, we argue that the observed heterogeneity in WFH transitions is consistent with potentially more permanent changes to work arrangements in some occupations, and not just temporary substitution in response to greater health risks. Consistent with increased WFH adoption, many more – especially higher-educated – workers expect to WFH in the future.

Suggested Citation

  • Alexander Bick & Adam Blandin & Karel Mertens, 2020. "Work from Home Before and After the COVID-19 Outbreak," Working Papers 2017, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, revised 25 Feb 2021.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:feddwp:88255
    DOI: 10.24149/wp2017r2
    Note: Previous versions of this paper were titled “Work from Home After the COVID-19 Outbreak.”
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    work from home; telecommuting; telework; remote work; COVID-19; pandemic;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J1 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics
    • J2 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health
    • R4 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics

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