Average Work Week In United States: 29.1 Hours (DATA)

Average Work Week In United States

United States’s Average Work Week

Average work hours per week: 29.1

Annual work hours: 1,513

Country rank: 107/187 (ranked shortest to longest week)

Countries with similar work weeks: Russia and Syria

GDP per capita: $69,292

Unemployment rate: 5.46%


What is considered full-time in the United States?

Average 30 hours or more per week (or 130 hours per month)

Average Work Hours Per Week In United States

On average, people in United States work 29.1 hours per week.

This figure is based on data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), which publishes the number of hours worked per year by the average person in a country. OECD obtains this figure by dividing the total number of hours worked in 2021 by the average number of employed people. In United States, the average person works 1,513 hours per year.

To get average weekly hours worked for United States, we divided the annual hours by 52 weeks.

With an average work week of 29.1 hours, United States ranks 107 out of 187 countries with available data for the shortest work week. That gives United States a percentile rank of 43%.

  • 106 countries have a shorter work week than United States
  • 80 countries have a longer work week than United States

Russia and Syria are the two countries in the rankings with the most similar average hours worked per week.

Take a look at the full data set here: Average Work Hours Per Week For Every Country


Full-Time & Part-Time Hours In The United States

What is considered full-time?

In the United States, a full-time work week is generally considered to be 30 hours or more per week on average (or 130 hours per month). This figure best describes the normal full-time work week, not the labor laws in the country. To learn more about full-time work, visit this site.

What is considered part-time?

In the United States, a part-time work week could be considered fewer than 30 hours per week or 130 hours per month. If you are looking to better understand employment and labor laws in the country, please search the appropriate government websites.

See Also: How Many Hours Is Part Time? [Breakdown By Country]


Supporting Economic Data About United States

The average work week is dependent on a number of economic factors – a shorter or longer work week doesn’t necessarily mean high or lower prosperity. In this section, you’ll find some context to the economic activity behind United States’s average work week.

Located in North America, United States has a population of 331,893,745 people as of 2021. Both the region name and the population count is gathered from public data provided by The World Bank.

United States’s economy is categorized to have “high income.” For context, here are the four categories that The World Bank uses to describe income levels:

  • Low income
  • Lower middle income
  • Upper middle income
  • High income

The gross domestic product (GDP) for United States in 2021 was $22,997,500,000,000.

This GDP figure is compiled by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The IMF collects the GDP in the national currency for the country and then converts it to US dollars at the average exchange rate for that year.

With a GDP of $22,997,500,000,000 and a population of 331,893,745, United States’s GDP per capita is $69,292, which ranks 6 out of 181 countries with available data. The ranking is listed from highest GDP per capita to lowest.

  • 5 countries have a higher GDP per capita than United States
  • 175 countries have a lower GDP per capita than United States

The unemployment rate in United States is 5.46%, which ranks 98 out of 173 countries with available data. The ranking is listed from highest unemployment rate to lowest.

  • 97 countries have a higher unemployment rate than United States
  • 75 countries have a lower unemployment rate than United States


Does United States have a four-day work week?


The United States does not have a four-day work week. However, multiple bills have been proposed across the country to change the average work week from five days and 40 hours to four days and 32 hours.

Learn more about the status of the four-day work week by country.


Notes About The Average Work Week In United States

The average you see for each country includes hours for full-time, part-time, and self-employed people, so this data should not be used as the standard full-time work week in United States. For example, if half of United States’s employed workers were full time (40 hours) and half were part time (20 hours), the weekly average would show 30 hours.

In addition, this data is “actual hours worked” so it does not account for time off (holidays, vacation days, leaves, etc.). For example, if someone worked 2,000 hours in a year, we would show the average week as 38.5 (2,000 divided by 52 weeks). If that person actually took four weeks of paid time off, their typical work week would actually be 41.7 (2,000 divided by 48 weeks) with four weeks off.

Therefore, this data should be used as a guide for average work hours per week across the whole working population and as a comparison to other countries, not as the standard full-time work week.


Additional Work Week Resources

At Buildremote, we provide in-depth coverage and advice about the changing nature of work. In particular, we’ve written about the work week itself quite a bit so your company can make changes to how it operates using data and proven tactics, instead of guesswork. Here are some related articles you may find useful:

Want to see how United States compares to other countries?

Take a look at the full data set here: Average Work Hours Per Week For Every Country

Are you preparing your company’s annual calendar?

Here’s a breakdown of all work days, work hours, and national holidays in the United States for 2023: How Many Work Hours & Days Are In A Month? [USA, 2023]

Need a new work schedule for your team?

We’ve built customizable templates for employee work schedules, corporate work weeks, shift work, entrepreneur schedules, and more: The Ultimate Work Schedule Template Library

Want to see which countries are adopting a four-day work week (or considering it)?

We track every company’s four-day work week laws, plans, proposals, and sentiment: The 4-Day Work Week Country: Does It Actually Exist?

Sources for the data in this article:

  • GDP data comes from the IMF
  • Annual work hours is from OECD
  • Population data comes from The World Bank
  • Unemployment data comes from The World Bank
  • All calculations, ratios, rankings and percentiles are done by Buildremote

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