A long work week is as American as apple pie—but some cities are working significantly more than others, according to a new report from WalletHub.
WalletHub analyzed the 116 largest cities in the U.S. to determine where Americans work the hardest. According to the report, which incorporates factors such as the average local work week and labor force participation rates, Americans in Anchorage, Alaska, work harder than all the rest. They’re followed by workers in Virginia Beach, Va.; Plano, Texas; Sioux Falls, S.D.; and Irving, Texas. In fact, of the top 20 hardest working cities, nine are in the West and a total of five are in the Lone Star State.
It’s not like cities near the bottom of the list are slacking, however. Overall, we’re still working a ton, especially for an industrialized, wealthy country. The average working week was 34.6 hours for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls in January, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Gallup’s 2015 Work and Education Survey found that workers reported being on the job on average 47 hours per week.
According to the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development, we work far more hours than our German, Scandinavian, French, Swiss, Italian, Japanese, British, and Australian counterparts. We retire later and take less vacations, too.
It takes more than a long work week to determine which states grind harder than the rest. To that end, WalletHub compared the labor force participation rate, number of workers with multiple jobs, commute time, volunteer hours per resident, and leisure time spent on an average day, in addition to average hours worked. WalletHub gave each metric a score between 0 and 100, with average work week hours and labor force participation rate weighted most heavily (at 60 points and 20 points, respectively) to come up with a cumulative score for each city.
|Overall Rank||City||Total Score||Average Hours Worked Per Week|
|2||Virginia Beach, Virginia||80.42||40.1|
|4||Sioux Falls, South Dakota||78.06||N/A|
|7||San Francisco, California||75.33||39.6|
|10||Charlotte, North Carolina||73.07||39.4|
New York City has the longest commute time of any city at 39.4 minutes on average (though NYC ranks 32nd overall in the hardest workings rankings, well behind Jersey City, N.J., and Washington, D.C.), followed, unsurprisingly, by cities with workers who commute to NYC (Jersey City and Newark), and Chicago, Philadelphia, and San Francisco.
Sioux Falls, S.D., has the highest labor-force participation rate, at 83.8%, while Detroit, with a 61.4% labor force participation rate, has the lowest. WalletHub deemed Providence, R.I.; Detroit, and Burlington, Vt., as the least hard working cities in the U.S., with scores of 31.69, 28.76, and 18.66, respectively.
So residents of Anchorage, looking to take a break from all that work? We have a few suggestions.