Raw Japan

Slices of Japanese business, politics and life

OT beats date QT

July 1, 2009

MARKETS-FOREX/The vast majority of newly hired Japanese say overtime is now more important than dating if given a choice, reflecting growing job anxiety in the world’s No.2 economy.

A survey by the Japan Productivity Centre, a private think tank, showed over 80 percent of new recruits picking working late over having a date.

Unemployment is at 5.2 percent, the highest since 2003, while there are only about four jobs available for every nine applicants.

“The financial and economic recession and fears of corporate restructuring and bankruptcy are motivating new employees to prioritise work over private life,” the centre’s Tetsu Takano told me.

The trend was more slightly pronounced among women, as 88 percent picked OT over QT, or quality time, with a beau, compared to 78 percent for men in the survey of 3,200 new recruits.

The average age for men and women to marry in Japan is rising, while economic pressures may be contributing to that trend.

But perhaps more office time could lead to at least one mitigating statistic,  an increase in ”shanai kekkon”, or same office weddings.

Photo credit: REUTERS/Yuriko Nakao

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