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Cut the working week to a maximum of 20 hours, urge top economists

Babe_Ruth

Sultan of Swat
Staff member
V.I.P.
Cut the working week to a maximum of 20 hours, urge top economists | Society | The Observer

A thinktank, the New Economics Foundation (NEF), which has organised the event with the Centre for Analysis of Social Exclusion at the London School of Economics, argues that if everyone worked fewer hours – say, 20 or so a week – there would be more jobs to go round, employees could spend more time with their families and energy-hungry excess consumption would be curbed. Anna Coote, of NEF, said: "There's a great disequilibrium between people who have got too much paid work, and those who have got too little or none."
Assuming that salaries would remain the same, does this sound like a good idea?
 
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BigBob

Registered Member
Double my salary and I'd do it, keep my salary the same and I'll lose my car, be turned into multiple credit agencies because I wouldn't be able to continue my student loans, cell phone bills etc etc.
 

Hilander

Free Spirit
Staff member
V.I.P.
If the salaries remained the same it would be fine with me. I doubt they would though and many people would have a hard time meeting their financial obligations.
 

CaptainObvious

Son of Liberty
V.I.P.
No, this is an idiotic idea. Then firms would have to employ double the amount of workers to get the same amount of production for 40 hours, thus doubling their wage cost which would result in massive inflation to recoup these costs.
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By the way, I find it funny when someone writes an article like this and takes a suggestion like this one and in the title of the article they claim it's made by "top economists" as if the world's best economists all got together and came up with this singular plan. What nonsense.
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Bare in mind my comments are considering this proposal in the US and it's economy, it's not based on the UK and it's economy. I don't know enough about it's economy to comment on whether this is a good idea or not. Granted being in the UK does not affect the laws of supply and demand but I did want to make that clear nonetheless.
 
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Jeanie

still nobody's bitch
V.I.P.
I don't see how that could work; as CO said, employers would have to double the number of workers to get the same amount of production.

I think a better solution is to lower the retirement age, and possibly cut the work week but not in half.
 

Smelnick

Creeping On You
V.I.P.
This seems ill thought out. The logistics just don't work. I would be a bigger fan of working 4 ten hour days in a row, and have a 3 day weekend every week lol. That third day of rest would make working the 10 hour days easier.
 

Nevyrmoore

AKA Ass-Bandit
Bare in mind my comments are considering this proposal in the US and it's economy, it's not based on the UK and it's economy. I don't know enough about it's economy to comment on whether this is a good idea or not. Granted being in the UK does not affect the laws of supply and demand but I did want to make that clear nonetheless.
You'd also have the problem of people on hourly rates suddenly earning less money. Sure, their idea of "more leisure" is a nice one, but it's a bit hard to enjoy that leisure when you suddenly have to worry about those little things like rent/morgage, utilities, and food. Because you know that hourly rates won't increase to make up for this, as companies would then end up paying more than they were to take on extra people to make up those lost 20 hours. No, hourly rates will remain the same so that they don't lose any extra money from hiring those extra guys. So while everyone else enjoys their extra time at home, those of us on hourly rates end up using that extra off-time on second jobs.

Not exactly a well thought-out solution, is it.
 

Wade8813

Registered Member
Right now, a lot of people are working 2, maybe 3 jobs because they want MORE hours. So are you going to mandate that employers just pay a lot more? If so, employers will just start charging a lot more - which means that the extra pay won't do any good.

I don't see how this makes any sense.
 

Nevyrmoore

AKA Ass-Bandit
Right now, a lot of people are working 2, maybe 3 jobs because they want MORE hours.
Is that the UK, or America? Bear in mind this is a solution to a British problem, so you can't quite apply American statistics here.

So are you going to mandate that employers just pay a lot more? If so, employers will just start charging a lot more - which means that the extra pay won't do any good.
The alternative is that everyone who works hourly rates are suddenly forced to go looking for second or third jobs just to live, when they didn't before. All these people will still be competing for the same jobs, so for them, the situation isn't going to change for the better; there will still be significant unemployment problems, and there would also be thousands of people at serious risk of being unable to afford basic needs (when before, that wasn't a problem).

For example, let's take me. Me and the person I live with are just about able to afford rent, utilities, food and so forth. Money is tight, but we make do. If our hours were suddenly cut to a mandatory maximum of 20 hours a week, we'd be ruined, unless we were able to get second jobs quick enough; which isn't likely to come about.

This idea would ultimately hurt a lot of working class citizens, because we both know that not all of them are going to be able to land that second job. The only way I can see this being avoided is that the 20 hour maximum only applies to those with yearly salaries. This would let those on salaries make the choice of if they want to get a second job to work those extra 20 hours a week, whilst also making sure that those on hourly rates don't have to worry about taking on a second job just to survive, or worry about being unable to survive after losing either of their jobs.
 

Millz

Better Call Saul
Staff member
V.I.P.
Sounds like a brainless idea to me haha

Whether its the UK or in the US...I don't see how this makes any logical sense at all and isn't going to fix a damn thing.
 
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