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November, 1986, Vol. 109, No. 11
Work schedules of Americans:
an overview of new findings
In recent years, we have become familiar with such "megatrends" in the labor force as the rapidly increasing participation of women, the tendency toward earlier retirement among men, the maturing of the baby-boom cohorts, and the shift of workers out of the stagnant goods-producing sector of the economy and into the expanding services sector. Yet, we still have little data about the day-to-day and week-to-week working lives of American men and women. Among the most conspicuous gaps in our knowledge have been such unanswered (or only occasionally answered) questions as: How many Americans work at two jobs? How many work at night, or schedules other than the stereotypical daylight shifts? How many Americans work on weekends? How many have jobs entailing home-based work? And what proportionsif offered such a choicewould prefer to work either more or fewer hours per week at their current rates of pay?
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