The 15-Hour Week: Keynes's Prediction Revisited

19 Pages Posted: 14 May 2021

Date Written: May 1, 2021


In 1930 Keynes opined that by 2030 people would work only 15 hours per week. As such, this prediction will not be realised. However, expected lifetime hours of leisure and non-market work in the UK rose by 60 per cent between 1931 and 2011, considerably more than Keynes would have expected. This reflects increases in life expectancy at older ages and much longer expected periods of retirement. Leisure in retirement contributes to high life satisfaction for the elderly but building up savings to pay for it is a barrier to working only 15 hours per week.

JEL Classification: J22, J26, N34

Suggested Citation

Crafts, Nicholas, The 15-Hour Week: Keynes's Prediction Revisited (May 1, 2021). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP16140, Available at SSRN:

Nicholas Crafts (Contact Author)

University of Warwick ( email )

Gibbet Hill Rd.
Coventry, West Midlands CV4 8UW
United Kingdom

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