Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Opportunity cost of watching television: $7 trillion per year

As I mentioned yesterday, Americans spend 2.7 hours per day watching television. That's 18.9 hours per week. Or 950 hours per year.

A thumbrule is that a person on a 40 hour week works 1860 hours per year.

So the amount of time we spend watching television is equal to about half the amount of time spent working.

The GDP of the U.S. is about $14 trillion.

Now I realize that GDP depends on the input of capital, not just labor.

But as a first-order approximation, the opportunity cost of watching tv seems to be something approaching $7 trillion.

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