I live in western europe and the usual office time is 9:00 - 18:00, with 1h break. I've heard so many times that in the US people work 9-5 but the math doesn't adds up: do people in US work less than 40h (8x5days) a week? Is there a paid lunch-break? I read This related question but didn't quite understand what's the nowadays standard.

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    Most of this depends on the company and industry. – sf02 Oct 3 '19 at 15:32
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    9-5 five days a week is exactly 40 hours if your lunch is paid. Many companies have a paid 30 minute - 60 minute lunch break. If you didn't have a paid lunch break you would have to work 9-5:30 to hit 40 hours. It depends on the company. 38 hours is fairly common to work for people for this reason. – DetectivePikachu Oct 3 '19 at 15:32
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    @DetectivePikachu yeah, but I never heard of someone's 1h lunch break paid - that's why I'm asking. – ThinkTank Oct 3 '19 at 15:34
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    "Working 8 to 5" or "Working 9 to 6" just doesn't have the same ring to it when Dolly Parton sings it. – Seth R Oct 3 '19 at 17:45
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    Most jobs I've had have been 8 to 5 with an hour for lunch. In New York City 9 to 5 with paid lunch is common. As New York produces a lot of the media, I think the New York practice is heard about more often. – Jay Oct 4 '19 at 16:14

Do people in US work less than 40h (8x5days) a week? Is there a paid lunch-break?

Some do. Some don't.

Everywhere I have ever worked had unpaid lunch breaks. Usually that meant working 8:00 - 17:00 or the equivalent or more.

Most salaried people I have worked with, work more than 40 hours per week.

  • For those that don't typically use 24 hour notation 17:00 actually is 5 PM. – Donald Oct 3 '19 at 18:16

I've always heard of 9-5 too and I live in the US. However, most "banker hours" companies I have worked for have the hours of 8-5, with one hour lunch unpaid.

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