Mexicans, Especially Mexican Women, Work the Longest Hours, Says OECD

Mexicans — women in particular — work longer hours than anyone else in the developed world, according to a study by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Counting paid and unpaid labor — domestic chores such as cooking and cleaning at home — Mexicans work 10 hours a day. (The average of all OECD countries is 8 hours a day.) Belgians, by contrast, work the least, 7 hours a day. The American work day clocks-in at 8 hours and 26 minutes.

The reason for the longer Mexican work day is unpaid labor, mostly housework. Mexicans do the most in the OECD, at more than 3 hours per day. Much of this time is spent cooking. Koreans spend the least amount of time doing housework, at one hour and 19 minutes.

Women do the bulk of the unpaid labor across all OECD countries, but the division of unpaid labor is most unequal in Mexico. There is a 4 hour and 21 minute per day difference between Mexican men and women. The average gap in the OECD is 2 hours and 28 minutes per day. The differential in the United States is considerably smaller, at 1 hour and 44 minutes per day. The smallest is in Denmark, where there is a 57 minute difference.

Among the other insights in the Society at a Glance report are:

More On This...

Americans spend the least time cooking each day (30 minutes) of all OECD countries and Turks the most (74 minutes).

Time spent shopping also counts as housework. The French spend the most (32 minutes a day) and the Koreans the least (13 minutes).

These indicators are taken from OECD databases and other sources and shows how societies are changing over time and compared with other countries.

Follow us on
Like us at