National Geographic News
Photo of a man adjusting giant clocks.

Peter Shugrue checks a clock at the Electric Time Company factory in Medfield, Massachusetts, on March 8, 2013.

PHOTOGRAPH BY BRIAN SNYDER, REUTERS/CORBIS

Brian Handwerk

for National Geographic

Published March 6, 2014

Clock confusion will occur again this weekend when daylight saving time (also called daylight savings time) gets under way in the United States.

Twice each year this controversial practice gives rise to various questions: Why do we spring forward and fall back? Does daylight saving time (DST) really save energy? Is it bad for your health? There is no consensus, but experts do offer some answers.

But first, the details.

Daylight saving time 2014 will begin at 2 a.m. on Sunday, March 9, when most U.S. states will spring forward an hour. Time will fall back to standard time again on Sunday, November 2, when DST ends. (See National Geographic's pictures of spring landscapes.)

But the federal government doesn't require U.S. states or territories to observe daylight saving time, which is why residents of Arizona (except for residents of the Navajo Indian Reservation), Hawaii, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the Northern Marianas Islands won't need to change their clocks this weekend. Other states could soon follow suit, or mandate permanent DST, or even do something else entirely.

Tufts University professor Michael Downing, author of Spring Forward: The Annual Madness of Daylight Saving Time, said that each year at least 10 and often as many as 30 new bills appear in various state legislatures to advocate either permanently stopping daylight saving or going on daylight saving time all year long.

"It's an annual treat," he said, noting that the bills vary widely and could create some real clock kerfuffles.

"This year I think the Kentucky/Tennessee situation is particularly interesting. Each state has two time zones, which adds to the complications, but if their two proposals went through their independent legislatures, Tennessee would be on permanent DST while Kentucky would be on permanent standard time.

"That would mean—and this is ridiculous but true—cities in Tennessee's eastern time zone and Kentucky's central time zone that are only 5 or 10 miles [8 to 16 kilometers] apart would have two-hour time differences." (Related: "Time to Move On? The Case Against Daylight Saving Time.")

Daylight Savings in Other Countries

That kind of localized clock lunacy wouldn't be totally unprecedented, Downing added.

"Before the Uniform Time Act of 1966, cities could dictate their own clocks and many adopted year-round DST. And the history of this project is that come March or April people's fingers get itchy, so some of those cities tended to move the clocks again and actually adopt a double daylight saving time."

Around the rest of the world the observance of DST is also very much a mixed bag. Most North American and European nations observe DST, while most African and Asian nations do not.

In Russia, which abolished daylight saving time in 2011, dark mornings are so unpopular that in 2013 a coalition in the nation's Duma proposed legislation to reinstate the practice.

Meanwhile in Japan, which hasn't observed DST in over 60 years, some politicians suggest a return could help ease the nation's post-Fukushima energy crunch. (Related: "Pictures: The Nuclear Cleanup Struggle at Fukushima.")

Brazil seems to split the difference. While only parts of the sprawling nation observe daylight saving time, those regions include major cities like Brasilia, Sao Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro. Brazil's electric utility estimates that DST saves about U.S. $200 million a year, largely by easing urban power demand on hot summer days.

Problems With Daylight Saving

Where it is observed, DST has been known to cause problems.

National surveys by Rasmussen Reports, for example, show that 83 percent of respondents knew when to move their clocks ahead in spring 2010.

Twenty-seven percent, though, admitted they'd been an hour early or late at least once in their lives because they hadn't changed their clocks correctly.

So why do we use daylight saving time in the first place?

Ben Franklin—of "early to bed and early to rise" fame—was apparently the first person to suggest the concept of daylight saving time, according to computer scientist David Prerau, author of the book Seize the Daylight: The Curious and Contentious Story of Daylight Saving Time.

While serving as U.S. ambassador to France in Paris, Franklin wrote of being awakened at 6 a.m. and realizing, to his surprise, that the sun rose far earlier than he usually did. Imagine the resources that might be saved if he and others rose before noon and burned less midnight oil, Franklin, tongue half in cheek, wrote to a newspaper.

"Franklin seriously realized it would be beneficial to make better use of daylight, but he didn't really know how to implement it," Prerau said.

It wasn't until World War I that daylight savings were realized on a grand scale. Germany was the first state to adopt the time changes, to reduce artificial lighting and thereby save coal for the war effort. Friends and foes soon followed suit. In the U.S. a federal law standardized the yearly start and end of daylight saving time in 1918—for the states that chose to observe it.

During World War II the U.S. made daylight saving time mandatory for the whole country, as a way to save wartime resources. Between February 9, 1942, and September 30, 1945, the government took it a step further. During this period DST was observed year-round, essentially making it the new standard time, if only for a few years.

Since the end of World War II, though, daylight saving time has always been optional for U.S. states. But its beginning and end have shifted—and occasionally disappeared.

During the 1973-74 Arab oil embargo, the U.S. once again extended daylight saving time through the winter, resulting in a one percent decrease in the country's electrical load, according to federal studies cited by Prerau.

Thirty years later the Energy Policy Act of 2005 was enacted, mandating a controversial month-long extension of daylight saving time, starting in 2007.

Energy Savings Questioned

But does daylight saving time really save any energy?

In recent years several studies have suggested that daylight saving time doesn't actually save energy—and might even result in a net loss.

Environmental economist Hendrik Wolff, of the University of Washington, co-authored a paper that studied Australian power-use data when parts of the country extended daylight saving time for the 2000 Sydney Olympics and other parts did not. The researchers found that the practice reduced lighting and electricity consumption in the evening but increased energy use in the now-dark mornings—wiping out the evening gains.

Likewise, Matthew Kotchen, an environmental economist at Yale, saw in Indiana a situation ripe for study.

Prior to 2006 only 15 of the state's 92 counties observed daylight saving time. So when the whole state adopted DST, it became possible to compare before-and-after energy use. While use of artificial lights dropped, increased air-conditioning use more than offset any energy gains, according to the daylight saving time research Kotchen led for the National Bureau of Economic Research in 2008.

That's because the extra hour that daylight saving time adds in the evening is a hotter hour. "So if people get home an hour earlier in a warmer house, they turn on their air conditioning," the University of Washington's Wolff said in 2011.

In fact, Hoosier consumers paid more on their electric bills than before they made the annual switch to daylight saving time, the study found. (Related: "Extended Daylight Saving Time Not an Energy Saver?")

But other studies do show energy gains.

In an October 2008 report to Congress, mandated by the same 2005 energy act that extended daylight saving time, the U.S. Department of Energy asserted that springing forward does save energy.

Extended daylight saving time saved 1.3 terawatt hours of electricity. That figure suggests that the practice reduces annual U.S. electricity consumption by 0.03 percent and overall energy consumption by 0.02 percent. While those percentages seem small, they could represent significant savings because of the nation's enormous total energy use.

What's more, savings in some regions are apparently greater than in others.

California, for instance, appears to benefit most from daylight saving time—perhaps because its relatively mild weather encourages people to stay outdoors later. The Energy Department report found that DST resulted in an energy savings of one percent daily in the state.

But Wolff, one of many scholars who contributed to the federal report, suggested that the numbers were subject to statistical variability and shouldn't be taken as hard facts. And DST's energy gains in the U.S. largely depend on your location in relation to the Mason-Dixon Line, Wolff said. "The North might be a slight winner because the North doesn't have as much air conditioning," he said. "But the South is a definite loser in terms of energy consumption. The South has more energy consumption under daylight saving." (See in-depth energy coverage from National Geographic News.)

Daylight Saving Time: Healthy or Harmful?

For decades advocates of daylight saving time have argued that, energy savings or no, the practice boosts health by encouraging active lifestyles—a claim Wolff and colleagues have put to the test.

"In a nationwide American time-use study, we're clearly seeing that, at the time of daylight saving time extension in the spring, television watching is substantially reduced and outdoor behaviors like jogging, walking, or going to the park are substantially increased," Wolff said. "That's remarkable, because of course the total amount of daylight in a given day is the same."

But others warn of ill effects.

Till Roenneberg, a chronobiologist at Ludwig-Maximilians University in Munich, Germany, said in 2010 his studies show that our circadian body clocks—set by light and darkness—never adjust to gaining an "extra" hour of sunlight at the end of the day during daylight saving time.

"The consequence of that is that the majority of the population has drastically decreased productivity, decreased quality of life, increasing susceptibility to illness, and is just plain tired," Roenneberg said. (Also see "Jet Lag Cure for Mice Illuminates Inner Workings of Circadian Clocks.")

One reason so many people in the developed world are chronically overtired, he said, is that they suffer from "social jet lag." In other words, their optimal circadian sleep periods are out of whack with their actual sleep schedules.

Shifting daylight from morning to evening only increases this lag, he said. "Light doesn't do the same things to the body in the morning and the evening. More light in the morning would advance the body clock, and that would be good. But more light in the evening would even further delay the body clock."

Other research hints at even more serious health risks.

A 2008 study in the New England Journal of Medicine concluded that, at least in Sweden, the risk of having heart attack goes up in the days just after the spring time change. "The most likely explanation to our findings are disturbed sleep and disruption of biological rhythms," lead author Imre Janszky, of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, said in 2010. (Related: "Leap Year: How the World Makes Up for Lost Time.")

Daylight Savings Lovers, Haters

With verdicts on the benefits and costs of daylight saving time so split, it may be no surprise that the yearly time changes inspire polarized reactions.

In the U.K., for instance, the Lighter Later movement—part of 10:10, a group that advocates cutting carbon emissions—argues for a sort of extreme daylight saving time. First, they say, move standard time forward an hour; then keep observing DST as usual, adding two hours of evening daylight to what we currently consider standard time.

The folks behind StandardTime.com, on the other hand, want to abolish daylight saving time altogether. Calling energy-efficiency claims "unproven," they write: "If we are saving energy let's go year round with Daylight Saving Time. If we are not saving energy let's drop Daylight Saving Time!"

But don't most people enjoy that extra evening sun every summer? Even that remains in doubt.

National telephone surveys by Rasmussen Reports from spring 2010 and fall 2009 deliver the same answer. Most people just "don't think the time change is worth the hassle." Forty-seven percent agreed with that statement, while only 40 percent disagreed.

Seize the Daylight author Prerau said his own research on daylight saving time suggests most people are fond of it. "I think the first day of daylight saving time is really like the first day of spring for a lot of people," Prerau said. "It's the first time that they have some time after work to make use of the springtime weather.

"I think if you ask most people if they enjoy having an extra hour of daylight in the evening eight months a year, the response would be pretty positive."

54 comments
Jay G
Jay G

I live in Texas and in the summer evenings it is boiling hot- too hot for many outdoor activities.  Then come fall and cooler temperatures, BAM! the time changes and you get home from work and only have an our of daylight to do anything outdoors.  So you stay inside and burn more lighting.  What's saved?!

I'm with others who say split the difference- change the clocks once by 1/2 hour and then leave it alone!

Raymond Buczinski
Raymond Buczinski

I would love to live by one standard because I use to much air conditioning in the summer which raises my utility bill, so I don't see any savings.

Terry Stonecipher
Terry Stonecipher

Sorry for the controversy. Move the clock 1/2 hr. and leave it.


La Tricoteuse
La Tricoteuse

I am positive that after the switch forward last spring, it stayed dark until later in the morning. Does anyone have an idea why this might be?

m s
m s

Because we still aren't using the stardate system. LOL

Harvey Wachtel
Harvey Wachtel

"In Russia, which abolished daylight saving time in 2011, dark mornings are so unpopular that in 2013 a coalition in the nation's Duma proposed legislation to reinstate the practice."  This doesn't make sense.  DST exacerbates morning darkness.  I think what Russia did in 2011 is to institute year-round DST and now people want to go back to clock-setting in the spring and fall.

Any data or opinions on the effect of DST on traffic accidents in the evening commute?  The morning?

Anyone have any idea where we got the inconsistency of setting clocks ahead from 02:00 ST to 03:00 DST but back from 02:00 DST to 01:00 ST?  I'd have expected to get back the "same" hour we gave up by setting the clocks back from 03:00 DST to 02:00 ST.  I guess politicians don't think like computer programmers.

Any data on injuries from falling off ladders while trying to set the clock over the kitchen doorway?

Ellen Blanchette
Ellen Blanchette

I have been enjoying the longer afternoon today, as the weather was warm and I could take a walk in the sunshine even though it was 5 p.m. Still, I don't understand how we're saving daylight because the days get longer and longer as we progress towards summer. By late June the sun is rising at 4:30 in the morning. In July the sun is up till 9 p.m. In reading this article, I have to admit I'd like to see us just stay with this time schedule all year round. I really don't think I ever adjusted to Standard time after we switched. It was already dark at 5:30 p.m. and after the switch it was getting dark at 4:30 p.m. It's so depressing watching the evening light disappear. And then it still is dark in the mornings after just a few weeks so what's the point?  


The part that I think we all have trouble dealing with is the change, forward or back. Adjusting to the time change is just hard because of the circadia rhythm that our bodies get used to and then have to adjust back or forward again. Maybe we should just work shorter hours in the winter so we wouldn't have to get up in the dark or go home after work in the dark. Maybe we could just go to work at 10 am and leave work at 4 pm. It's what the bosses do already in corporate America so why not the rest of us. Then we could all stop being so sleep deprived.

Lisa C.
Lisa C.

DST has always been a part of my life and I still can't get use to it. My husband complains every year when we have to fall back. He immediately gets depressed and less active. We have been to Hawaii several times at different times of year and never had any issues with the time while there, even when is gets dark at 8pm. Our kids are now grown, but when they were toddlers it was difficult to get them to bed by 9pm when it still daylight outside.

ernie vee
ernie vee

disorientation for about a week then i get used to it

no fun in that

pick one time frame and stay that way

Steve Brown
Steve Brown

Waking up in the darks SUCKS!

Taking the dogs out in the Dark SUCKS!

Who needs more light after work?...dorks that don't go to happy hour!

I say keep DST, but move it to 2 or 3pm on Monday and turn it into a fun holiday.....why the hell do I have to lose an hour of my weekend?

Lyly One
Lyly One

Good article. I was used to don't mind about DST when I was a single. However, now I married and have two kids (1 infant and another in kindergarten) I don't like DST because it disrupts our sleep pattern. It's not easy to put children in bed early and it is also poor to our children because we have to wake them up early. DST drives us nut twice a years.

Human is not a machine. Since a lot of "Other research hints at even more serious health risks" and since we already suffer enough from DST why do we want our children, grand children, great grad children suffer from it too?  WWII was end longer so if the government care its citizens then they should stop this overdue practice. Everyday has 24 hrs and everyone should know how to use it wisely.

Bill Skywatcher
Bill Skywatcher

I don't mind DST generally, but it starts too EARLY and it ends too LATE.


Put it back to starting in April and ending in October.

Tru Anarchist
Tru Anarchist

Back before there was a standard 8 hour work day (thank you Anarchists) DST greatly benefited industry because they could make workers work later.

N A
N A

People, it's really, really simple: We change the clocks around to alter human behavior to maximize usage of available sunlight in a co-ordinated manner. I LOVE DST because it results in 9 PM sunsets, etc. It's nice to have everyone's work day end at a time when there's still reasonable sunlight available, and it feels nice to wake up knowing that there's tons of sunlight left in the day, instead of knowing that I've wasted some of it sleeping.

Kay Hempsall
Kay Hempsall

This is an interesting article that explores the pros and cons of clock changing practices - it is odd that the benefits are perhaps not financial more aesthetic ... I wonder if anyone has done a study of how this affects global business and other forms of communication in our now much more interconnected world?

pamela letstalkaboutcorsica
pamela letstalkaboutcorsica

I find it odd that we still do not really know if it's positive enough to keep on doing so, after all this time. Interesting to see how it differs within so many countries too, meaning it's not worldwide at the same time! it's quite confusing in fact. There seem to be many pros and cons involved.

Tuesday Blackmon
Tuesday Blackmon

so the debate is on , None  of my clocks that would  originally change (as set to) did,as well as my daughters at her work . Yet,a friend near nashville did . W T h ?

Bea Moeller
Bea Moeller

I generally awake at 5 a.m. EST during the winter. Watching the sun rise earlier every day (as well as farther to the north) has been a very cheerful experience, as has watching live things respond to the light. More light at the end of the day, when one is tired, is no particular gift to me. However, for school children, having light in which to play at the end of the day (for those who still play outside at all) is a very great benefit.

Michael Marrello
Michael Marrello

It's 7:30 Sunday morning and it's still dark outside. How is this good? Monday I will be at work for 7:00 and the sun will still be below the horizon. Give me my mornings back!

Mark Seibold
Mark Seibold

Move your clock ahead now to lose one hour of sleep this weekend.

Noemi Gotay
Noemi Gotay

It drives me crazy. the sun is coming out earlier every day, and then one day is dark again. so it puts me in A TWIGHT LIGHT ZONE. The day should go by smoothly all day, every day. make it one or the other. 

Donna Stieglitz
Donna Stieglitz

If most people like the extra hour of daylight with Daylight Savings Time, then why not leave it DST all year round?  

Robert Spera
Robert Spera

I used to hate DST. But since I just retired, I will just get up tomorrow morning when the sunrises like I normally do, and start to wind down as it get dark. The clock is no longer very important since I am no longer on a schedule.

Linda Jackson
Linda Jackson

Don't forget to spring ahead this weekend!!!

Ian Edward
Ian Edward

I do not know how true this could be but I remember that in 2003 I read an article that said; the planet Earth is not rotating in 24 hours anymore, that what we call 24 hrs "1 day"  has become 16 hrs.', and that is why the days goes faster and years come sooner than before. Do you think that this could be a reason why government are doing these changes? 

Anne Madsen
Anne Madsen

Pretty cool article on history and impact of daylight savings ...

Mihajlo Filipovic
Mihajlo Filipovic

So why is so important to keep the illusion of having the "same time" throughout the year? Why not simply shift the working hours to co-incide with the normal day-night cycle? Consider nine-to-fivers ... those have very little daylight in their lives. People working indoors would benefit from starting earlier, as they would have more daylight after work. 

There are many more ways to save energy, for instance by ceasing to produce silly, useless things that we really do not need (the list is way too long to place here), let's just mention the single-use products, and traditional-turned-mercantile extravaganza of irresponsible power spending on things "decorative"... If we could manage to quit senseless waste, (among other things, forgetting to turn off the lighs when there is no-one in the room), there would be enough power for things that we really need - or need more. The importance of saving energy equals or surpasses even the energy production.

As to the simplicity of timekeeping... whatever happened with Internet Time?

( http://www.timeanddate.com/time/internettime.html )

CLINTON A.
CLINTON A.

DST is good. Stop whining about it. 

A. Hensley
A. Hensley

How wonderful it would be - for DST to go away, period....


Having grown up with Standard Time, and having suddenly been plunged into this ritual - helps me to provide you with living and breathing proof - that the change is not necessarily good for our bodies.


The natural rhythm of the rising of the sun as it changes with the seasons, is crucial to a balanced life....our bodies just "know" what time it is - when we naturally flow with the seasons and the sun's rising and setting.  I know this, because I had lived this life for 44 years.


Changing the clock to possibly save energy - or to "gain" hours after work is not healthful.  


Getting up "normal" time in the fall and winter (5:00am) was dark and chilly, which is natural and to be expected - however, getting up "normal" time in the spring and summer (5:00am) was warm and sunny.  This, also, is natural and is to be expected as well!!  If there were no actual clocks - it's likely that we'd more than likely have a tendency to awaken naturally with the Sun's rising and setting.....


To awaken in the spring mornings, and to see the sun beginning to peek it's light over the edge of the earth....telling our bodies that spring was almost here has always been part of my anticipation and the excitement for the impending joyful summer!!!  Yippee!!


To begin to see the sun in the morning like this and to now be suddenly plunged back into darkness again...is a cruel and horrible fate for a brain and soul that has worked to keep it together during a very long and cold winter!!!  Every fiber in my body cries that it's not FAIR to make us now re-direct our energies at jump-starting "spring" again....


While I may not be an objective observer, I can fully state that having lived the two different lives - my body KNOWS that it's not healthful to live with DST.


I do find it interesting that many folks who were not necessarily against DST early on - have started to see some of the problems by being on DST.  And that having lost early morning light - they, too, wish that we didn't have to put their children to bed at night with the sun still shining at 9:30pm....


Yes, possibly changing time zones might help this....but, the reality still comes back to the simple issue - there really is not true value to observing DST.  There is no more extra light, it just "is"


Admittedly, I've tried to devise an alternate schedule for people in my employ - that would somehow allow me, to in my own way, keep to "normal" time.  However, that means they not only have to deal with DST, they then also have to track with a crazy employer's desired alternate schedule.


The crazy thing about it is - we're more or less asking our employees (and/or ourselves) to arrive at work 1 hour earlier (than usual) in the summer, than we would be - if we didn't have DST!!  THAT is sort of crazy isn't it?  Why would any of us prefer to go to work 1 hour earlier than if we had to?  Me, I'd like to use that hour to stop and smell the roses and to watch the sun rise, before going to work!!


Me - I like to wake up at or about 5:00am "normal" time....so, with DST, I am actually waking up at what would be "normal" 6:00 am, correct?  I also like to be at my office for 1 hour before the employees arrive, which is 7:00.  


But, because of DST time - and if I wanted to keep to what I feel is "normal" time - I cannot keep ahead of the employees by waking up at a normal 5:00...because I'm now an hour late!!  I know that this seems contrary to the point, doesn't it - but because the clock changes and because the "clock" is ruling the scenario - I am now waking up at an equivalent to 4:00am "normal" time, arriving at the office at 5:00am "normal" time and my employees and I are hard at it by 6:00am "normal" time.  Yes, we're out of the office by 4:00pm "normal" time - but we also have another 6 hours to "use" after work, after waking up 1 hour earlier than we "normally" would!!


This sort of sucks, doesn't it?  No wonder everyone's body is confused and tired by the time "darkness" arrives at 10:00pm "normal" time because we've more or less asked our body to perform extra hard - by adding an extra hour of work early in the morning onto the already stressful day!!  Am pretty certain that 5 hours at the end of my day is plenty for me to do what I need and want to do for the summertime - it's always been plenty for my prior 40+ years....not sure that an extra hour at night gives me much of anything....other than being even MORE tired each day, as the "clock" tries to tell me that I am not "on time" anymore!!


Oh, and one other reason that the removal of DST provides us something else that's very valuable - it provides a more balanced day!


Without DST in the summer - the 'daylight' more readily "balances" within our day.....with about 1.5 hours before a typical workday - and about 4-4.5 hours after work.  But with DST - there is only about 1 to .5 hours of daylight to enjoy before your day begins, and then there is almost 5-5.5 hours of daylight to use before going to bed.


Some of us enjoy the sunlight in the morning....and that we don't necessarily get to fully enjoy the evening hours of "light" because we're so tired from semi-staying on our body's normal schedule and routine...those last hours in the evening almost become useless...


I'm just saying....the natural balance of nature, time and seasons - automatically helps us find an economy....by allowing us to find our equilibrium - through all of the seasons - it's probably likely that many of us will naturally work within the "daylight" periods and not need energy for the periods that are dark....so, to enforce a "clock" that is not natural...well, it's just not natural!! :)


John Pesackis
John Pesackis

Now that I'm retired and don't have to adhere to a strict time schedule, I awaken naturally and retire when I feel drowsy. Our dog and I tend to sleep the same hours. 

Sue Galts
Sue Galts

Don't forget to set your clocks ahead this weekend

John Rains
John Rains

I once had a neighbor, albeit an elderly person with reason to suspect her analytical abilities, who actually tried to sue the government because all that "extra sunlight" was killing her flower gardens and lawn.


....and she probably voted too.

Laura Hodge
Laura Hodge

I never understand what people are talking about when they say they are getting an extra hour of daylight when they change their clocks in the spring.  The clock does not determine the amount of daylight we have.  The number of daylight hours changes as the vernal equinox approaches and by the time we are in mid summer we have even more daylight hours.  All of that is dependent on the earth's rotation, not on the setting of the clock.  I just don't get it.  I guess that's why I am glad I live in Arizona and don't have to take part in this silly clock changing ritual.

Daria Volpe
Daria Volpe

@N A What time do you wake up that you are wasting daylight?

Mark Seibold
Mark Seibold

@Noemi Gotay  it's all really a state of mind. Astronomers really pay no attention to it, but astrologers are worried over it.

Mihajlo Filipovic
Mihajlo Filipovic

@Ian Edward  

This would mean that both the Earth rotation and around-the Sun cycle speeded up by 1/3rd?! Hardly, since our mechanisms for time measuring haven't changed their gear, and even the old clocks still work at the same pace.

IMO, one reason for this is aimed at spending the greater part of our working hours in the illusion of a daylight, whereas many working spaces are requiring artificial light throughout the day, anyway.

The nine-to-five worktime was aimed to solve this problem by putting the working hours to occupy the best part of the day... and people working shifts never gained anything from any such change. Thus, let's say that "working efficiency" (read: maximum energy usage while disregarding natural and health-related arguments) was the main reason for it.

Another reason might be, if you spend your daylight hours at work, then your free time is in the evening and/or nighttime - and you're more likely to go out and spend, rather than engage in some other relaxation which you'd likely do with less expense. That's how "weekend" was invented. :)

Rick Ash
Rick Ash

@Mihajlo Filipovic  So, you would advocate people that make those "decorative" things to all lose their jobs? And who is to say what you consider "frivolous" is not a necessity or "good to have" for me and others? I'll bet that is not your intent. 

I'm lucky, 41 years of selling high tech products to Fortune 200 companies. So, I am out in the sun (wind & rain) on most days. Or back at the office on the farm where I can always ride a horse instead of eating lunch and get plenty O Sun. Either way, love my job! 

John Rains
John Rains

@Laura Hodge  It is not an "extra" hour of daylight looking at the whole picture, but it is an hour of daylight that is available at the end of the day for you to use as you wish.  If you normally get off at 4 pm, sun time, and your clock is rolled forward ahead of sun time, you are really quitting work at 3 pm by the sun.  So, you have an "extra" hour of daylight from the time you get off work until the sun sets, compared to what you would have if you got off work by the sun time.

John Rains
John Rains

@Laura Hodge  It is not an "extra" hour of daylight looking at the whole picture, but it is an hour of daylight that is available at the end of the day for you to use as you wish.  If you normally get off at 4 pm, sun time, and your clock is rolled forward ahead of sun time, you are really quitting work at 3 pm by the sun.  So, you have an "extra" hour of daylight from the time you get off work until the sun sets, compared to what you would have if you got off work by the sun time.



Rick Ash
Rick Ash

@Mihajlo Filipovic @Ian Edward  Agreed, Agreed and Agreed. Just wanted to add that many US companies are working 4 (10 hour) days now, giving employees a three day weekend and themselves a huge boost in savings on energy costs. Just sayin'!

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