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seVen's avatar

Should there be a 4 day weekwork in US to save on gas and traffic congestion on freeways?

Asked by seVen (3458 points ) June 2nd, 2008 from iPhone
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

21 Answers

Sueanne_Tremendous's avatar

There should be a 4-day work week for sanity sake.

ccatron's avatar

people would still go places on their extra day off…in fact, they’d probably drive more

jlm11f's avatar

sounds good to me. now by when can you get a federal law for this passed? I would want a 4 day work week just for having more me time of course. I really doubt it helps traffic THAT much.

mirza's avatar

NO

Simply put, it would hurt the economy.

A three day weekend would indicate that we would be producing less (since we would working one-less day). As a result the GDP would go down which . A drop in GDP is usually a bad thing and you want to have a stable GDP for a healthy economy. Since we would be producing less, the price of goods would go UP (since demand > supply). As a result, the CPI would increase which would indicate the economy headed towards inflation. My guess is (correct me if I am wrong) unemployment rates would go up too. At this time, the last thing we need is an increase in unemployment. Right now the unemployment rate is 4.9 %. When the unemployment rate goes above 5.0 % it indicates that we are no longer in full employment and indicates that we might be headed towards a recession. As a result of the decline in production and the increase in prices, our exports would decrease and we would be able to buy less imported goods. As a result the value of the US dollar would go down. Naturally, the stock market would take a hit. Interest rates are likely to go up since there would be less money in circulation.

The only positive things that are likely to happen as a result of 4-day workweek are it would help boost worker’s moral and hopefully they will work more efficiently. People have more time to shop (with less money). There would be an increase in job sectors that are open on weekends (e.g. restaurants, malls,etc.). If interest rates do go up, then there would be a decrease on people’s credit card limits which might help teach America to spend within it’s reach.

hollywoodduck's avatar

@ ccatron – completely agree, couldn’t have said it better

And if people are home they will be watching tv, using the computer, have lights on all which would increase electricity use.

soundedfury's avatar

@mirza – you’re assuming that the 4-day work week is 32 hours. A 4-day work week that is still 40 hours wouldn’t hurt the GDP. Also, that whole thing is a pretty simplistic look at economics.

hollywoodduck's avatar

But maybe a better solution is telecommuting one or two days a week. You would still have the benefits of a five day work week, with less gas use and traffic. Plus if you’re supposed to be working you won’t (or at least shouldn’t be) running errands.

wildflower's avatar

I thought a 4 day work week would only be up for debate in France – and not for environmental reasons, as they’d surely demonstrate by obstructions, lighting fires and tipping over lorries…..

AlexChoi's avatar

No, the solutions are 1) telecommuting 2) carpooling 3) mass transit 4) getting jobs closer to your residence.

These are far less radical, and yet still easy to do.

Randy's avatar

I have a three day weekend every weekend! =)

Adina1968's avatar

I was discussing this with my husband yesterday. We were pondering if maybe companies would start offering working from home several days a week as a benefit?

XCNuse's avatar

no, I think that would hurt the economy drastically too.

If people were smart (well, this is if this is possible for them), they would work remotely from home. Technology today isn’t like it was yesterday, one can easily stay home and put out as much work (even more really…) at home, rather than in the office. Now I understand sometimes you have to actually go to the actual building, but when you think about it, if you worked at home at least twice, or even once a week, that gives you the typical Atlantan about 2 hours (for one day) extra work time because you don’t have to sit in traffic both ways.

Remote working just .. makes sense, that’s all I’m saying.

mirza's avatar

@soundedfury – a four day work week that is still 40 hours would still hurt the economy. A 40 hour work week would mean that people would have to work more hours. People working more hours would mean that there would be less jobs in the market since other people would lose their jobs due to the extra two hours. Also it would kill productivity to make people work two hours more. How is that whole thing is a pretty simplistic look at economics ?

Also the idea of remote working simply would not work. Yes there are jobs that can be done remotely, but the entire service industry (except tech support) is based on-the-spot work. People still rely on human interaction to get the job done

waterskier2007's avatar

@mirza, why would people lose their jobs if people are working two more hours?

edmartin101's avatar

A 4 day work week would work if say everybody is off on the same day and on that day gas prices surge to $6 a gallon. This will encourage people to use their bikes more and pollute less the environment. A 4 day work week means you work 10 hours a day, to keep a 40 hour a week schedule. I used to be on it when I was working for LADWP.

ccatron's avatar

@edmartin – if everyone is off on the same day, who’s gonna run the power plant? or the tv stations? or the grocery stores? or the department stores? or the restaurants?

XCNuse's avatar

Believe it or not, this came up on CNN last night, I didn’t stick around to watch it, I had to go back home, but they talked about people asking their bosses for 4 day work weeks.

I just thought it was funny because someone asked this, and a few days later it was on the news.

gooch's avatar

NO ..can you say economy! Japanese work 80 hours a week. We need to catch up so we can trump them.

XCNuse's avatar

Well I just heard on the news a few minutes ago that Utah is adopting this, and 3/4ths businesses will be closed on Fridays, and I can’t remember the number of people that won’t be working on Fridays.

So I suppose if this test in Utah passes then other major cities and states may soon adopt the idea.

PhilGood's avatar

@Mirza

The fact that you beilieve that they econimy would suffer and that we would be thrown into a recession because people had an extra day of work is irrational. Your aguement rests on the assumption that people would be less productive due to not having to go to work one of the days they are “supposed to”. But…

We have shown that you can still work just as many hours which equals same amount of work. Due to the continuity that the 10 hour day would allow for (1 less trip to and from the office, getting things in place before you start and packing things up before you leave) those would be a more productive 40 hours. Not to mention the improvement in employee moral/ physical health from having 72 hours to themselves in a row every week.

A 10 hour day would not effect unemployment in the least, there is no decrease in the number of hours available to work. The jobs aren’t going anywhere. If anything it would stand to reason it would create jobs to plug this one day a week gap with part time employees? Who says everyone has to have the same day off? Can’t wait to hear why you would think this to be the case?

Lastly remote working is awesome and definitely would work,and in many ways already is. I know this because I work with a company that provides the technology that makes it possible to do so. Correct me if I’m wrong but the services industry would only stand to benefit from people having an extra day so as to take advantage of services. Since these industries are usually busiest when people are off from work, people don’t get their hair cut, car washed, etc when they are in the office.

But don’t worry Mirza, I’m sure your boss appreciates your unwavering willingness to stay firmly planted in your seat behind your desk. Firmly believng that exploring options that would make at least one day a week more fulfilling are a sure fire way to run business into the ground and hurt his precious bottom line.

DeanV's avatar

i think it would depend on the places it happened, like if it happened in a big city nothing would really change, people would still do their work/shopping on their day off, not changing anything…

but if it happened in a sleepy little town like mine, it would be greatly appreciated for sanity’s sake, and probably wouldn’t change much; lots of people don’t go in 5 days a week anyway…

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