Long Hours at Work Are Costing You More Than Your Social Life

Long Hours at Work Are Costing You More Than Your Social Life

By Millie Dent

Putting in long hours at the office might impress your boss, but they’re certainly not helping your health.   

A new study published in The Lancet found that individuals who worked 55 hours per week or more had a 1-3 times greater risk of a stroke compared to those who worked 40 hours a week. Long working hours were also associated with an increased chance of coronary heart disease, but this association was found to be weaker than that for a stroke. 

The analysis was the largest study conducted thus far of the affiliation between working hours and cardiovascular health, including data on more than 600,000 individuals in Europe, the U.S., and Australia. 

Researchers believe the constant triggering of the stress response from overwork induces the stroke, often resulting in sudden death. In addition, behavioral activities that stem from the longer hours also contribute to the heightened chance of a stroke. 

Employees who work longer hours are found to rely more on heavy alcohol consumption as a way to reduce stress, but drinking only increases the risk for all types of strokes. In addition, more time at a desk means long periods of physical inactivity, which can increase the risk of stroke. 

A study by Credit Loan shows that employees worldwide are working more than 40 hours per week. The U.S. leads the pack with the highest percentages of overtime workers – 85.8 percent of males and 66.5 percent of females. 

Someone ought to tell Jeb Bush before he repeats what he said early in the campaign -- that Americans need to put in more hours at work.  

Chart of the Day: Boosting Corporate Tax Revenues

By The Fiscal Times Staff

The leading candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination have all proposed increasing taxes on corporations, including raising income tax rates to levels ranging from 25% to 35%, up from the current 21% imposed by the Republican tax cuts in 2017. With Bernie Sanders leading the way at $3.9 trillion, here’s how much revenue the higher proposed corporate taxes, along with additional proposed surtaxes and reduced tax breaks, would generate over a decade, according to calculations by the right-leaning Tax Foundation, highlighted Wednesday by Bloomberg News.

Chart of the Day: Discretionary Spending Droops

By The Fiscal Times Staff

The federal government’s total non-defense discretionary spending – which covers everything from education and national parks to veterans’ medical care and low-income housing assistance – equals 3.2% of GDP in 2020, near historic lows going back to 1962, according to an analysis this week from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Chart of the Week: Trump Adds $4.7 Trillion in Debt

By The Fiscal Times Staff

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget estimated this week that President Trump has now signed legislation that will add a total of $4.7 trillion to the national debt between 2017 and 2029. Tax cuts and spending increases account for similar portions of the projected increase, though if the individual tax cuts in the 2017 Republican overhaul are extended beyond their current expiration date at the end of 2025, they would add another $1 trillion in debt through 2029.

Chart of the Day: The Long Decline in Interest Rates

Wall Street slips, Dow posts biggest weekly loss of 2013
By The Fiscal Times Staff

Are interest rates destined to move higher, increasing the cost of private and public debt? While many experts believe that higher rates are all but inevitable, historian Paul Schmelzing argues that today’s low-interest environment is consistent with a long-term trend stretching back 600 years.

The chart “shows a clear historical downtrend, with rates falling about 1% every 60 years to near zero today,” says Bloomberg’s Aaron Brown. “Rates do tend to revert to a mean, but that mean seems to be declining.”

Chart of the Day: Drug Price Plans Compared

By The Fiscal Times Staff

Lawmakers are considering three separate bills that are intended to reduce the cost of prescription drugs. Here’s an overview of the proposals, from a series of charts produced by the Kaiser Family Foundation this week. An interesting detail highlighted in another chart: 88% of voters – including 92% of Democrats and 85% of Republicans – want to give the government the power to negotiate prices with drug companies.