On average Europeans toil 19% less than Americans, according to a study led by three economists from the U.S., Canada and Germany. Their research shows that Belgians work 25% less hours than U.S. citizens.
Amongst the reasons for this difference, in particular, feature a higher number of paid days off in Europe generally and a higher rate of unemployment in Europe than in the U.S.
The three economists undertook a detailed study, basing their data on 18 European countries and the U.S., covering the period from 1983 to 2011.
Within Europe, there are significant variations from country to country. The Swiss way of working appears the closest to the Americans (with only 4% less working time), whilst that of the Italians is distinctly set apart from the Americans (with 29% less working time).
Also seemingly ranking amongst the countries who work the least compared to America are France (26% less), Belgium (25% less), Poland (22% less) and even Germany also with a comparative figure of 22%.