New Data/Data Files: How Do Americans Spend Their Time? 2014 American Time Use Survey Released
In 2014, on days they worked, 23 percent of employed persons did some or all of their work at home, and 85 percent did some or all of their work at their workplace, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. In 2003, the first year for which comparable data are available, 19 percent of employed persons did some or all of their work at home, and 87 percent did some or all their work at their workplace on days worked.
These and other results from the American Time Use Survey (ATUS) were [recently released].
These data include the average amount of time per day in 2014 that individuals worked, did household activities, and engaged in leisure and sports activities. Additionally, measures of the average time per day spent providing childcare—both as a primary (or main) activity and while doing other things—for the combined years 2010-2014 are provided. For a further description of ATUS data and
methodology, see the Technical Note.
Working (by Employed Persons) in 2014
Employed persons worked an average of 7.8 hours on the days they worked. More hours were worked, on average, on weekdays than on weekend days—8.1 hours compared with 5.7 hours. (See table 4.)
- Many more people worked on weekdays than on weekend days: 83 percent of employed persons worked on an average weekday, compared with 35 percent on an average weekend day. (See table 4.)
- On the days they worked, employed men worked 52 minutes more than employed women. This difference partly reflects women’s greater likelihood of working part time. However, even among full-time workers (those usually working 35 hours or more per week), men worked longer than women—8.4 hours compared with 7.8 hours. (See table 4.)
- On the days they worked, 85 percent of employed persons did some or all of their work at their workplace and 23 percent did some or all of their work at home. Employed persons spent more time working at the workplace than at home—8.0 hours compared with 3.2 hours. (See table 6.)
- From 2003 to 2014, the share of employed persons who did some or all of their work at home on days they worked increased from 19 percent to 23 percent. During this same period, the average time employed persons spent working at home on days they did so increased by 37 minutes (from 2.6 hours to 3.2 hours). (See table 6.)
- Multiple jobholders were more likely to work on an average day than were single jobholders— 81 percent compared with 68 percent. (For a definition of average day, see the Technical Note.) Multiple jobholders also were more likely to work at home than were single jobholders—37 percent compared with 22 percent. (See table 6.)
- Self-employed workers were nearly three times more likely than wage and salary workers to have done some work at home on days worked—58 percent compared with 20 percent. Self- employed workers also were more likely to work on weekend days than were wage and salary workers—46 percent compared with 33 percent. (See tables 5 and 7.)
- On the days they worked, 39 percent of employed people age 25 and over with a bachelor’s degree or higher did some work at home, compared with only 12 percent of those with less than a high school diploma. (See table 6.)
Household Activities in 2014
- On an average day, 83 percent of women and 65 percent of men spent some time doing household activities such as housework, cooking, lawn care, or financial and other household management. (See table 1.)
- On the days they did household activities, women spent an average of 2.6 hours on such activities, while men spent 2.1 hours. (See table 1.)
- On an average day, 20 percent of men did housework—such as cleaning or laundry—compared with 49 percent of women. Forty-three percent of men did food preparation or cleanup, compared with 69 percent of women. Men were slightly more likely to engage in lawn and garden care than were women—11 percent compared with 8 percent. (See table 1.)
- From 2003 to 2014, the share of men doing food preparation and cleanup on an average day increased from 35 percent to 43 percent. Over this same period, the share of women doing housework on an average day decreased from 54 percent to 49 percent. The average time per day women spent doing housework declined by 9 minutes, from 58 minutes in 2003 to 49 minutes in 2014. (See table 1.)
Leisure Activities in 2014
- On an average day, nearly everyone age 15 and over (96 percent) engaged in some sort of leisure activity such as watching TV, socializing, or exercising. Of those who engaged in leisure activities, men spent more time in these activities (6.0 hours) than did women (5.2 hours). (See table 1.)
- Watching TV was the leisure activity that occupied the most time (2.8 hours per day), accounting for more than half of leisure time, on average, for those age 15 and over. Socializing, such as visiting with friends or attending or hosting social events, was the next most common leisure activity, accounting for 43 minutes per day. (See table 1.)
- Men were more likely than women to participate in sports, exercise, or recreation on a given day—22 percent compared with 17 percent. On days they participated, men also spent more time in these activities than did women—1.8 hours compared with 1.3 hours. (See table 1.)
- On an average day, adults age 75 and over spent 8.0 hours engaged in leisure activities—more than any other age group; 35- to 44-year-olds spent 4.1 hours engaged in leisure and sports activities—less than other age groups. (See table 11.)
- Time spent reading for personal interest and playing games or using a computer for leisure varied greatly by age. Individuals age 75 and over averaged 1.0 hour of reading per weekend day and 24 minutes playing games or using a computer for leisure. Conversely, individuals ages 15 to 19 read for an average of 8 minutes per weekend day and spent 1.2 hours playing games or using a computer for leisure. (See table 11.)
- Employed adults living in households with no children under age 18 engaged in leisure activities for 4.6 hours per day, almost an hour more than employed adults living with a child under age 6. (See table 8B.)
Care Of Household Children for the Period 2010-2014
- Adults living in households with children under age 6 spent an average of 2.0 hours per day providing primary childcare to household children. Adults living in households where the youngest child was between the ages of 6 and 17 spent less than half as much time providing primary childcare to household children—49 minutes per day. Primary childcare is childcare that is done as a main activity, such as providing physical care or reading to children. (See table 9.)
- On an average day, among adults living in households with children under age 6, women spent 1.0 hour providing physical care (such as bathing or feeding a child) to household children; by contrast, men spent 23 minutes providing physical care. (See table 9.)
- Adults living in households with at least one child under age 6 spent an average of 5.4 hours per day providing secondary childcare—that is, they had at least one child in their care while doing activities other than primary childcare. Secondary childcare provided by adults living in households with children under age 6 was most commonly provided while doing leisure activities (2.1 hours) or household activities (1.3 hours). (See table 10.)
- Adults living in households with children under age 6 spent more time providing primary childcare on an average weekday (2.1 hours) than on an average weekend day (1.8 hours). However, they spent less time providing secondary childcare on weekdays than on weekend days—4.5 hours compared with 7.4 hours. (See tables 10.)
About Gary Price
Gary Price (email@example.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.